MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A candlelight vigil was held Monday night at The Market Common in Myrtle Beach for Brittanee Drexel, seven years after she went missing from the area.
Drexel's family and friends also held a vigil in Rochester, N.Y., on Sunday at a field where she used to play soccer before her disappearance.
"We're holding on to the fact that we will find her, if not today, maybe tomorrow," said Dawn Drexel, Brittanee's mom, at the vigil in New York.
The Myrtle Beach vigil began at 7 p.m., Monday at a tree planted in honor of Drexel at The Market Common. Drexel's grandparents were in Myrtle Beach on Friday, and placed flowers at the site.
"If I could speak to her, I would just grab her, hug her, kiss her, tell her how much we missed her," said Carol Wagner, Drexel's grandmother. "Come home. Your mom is waiting for you."
Wagner said she will never stop searching for her granddaughter as long as there's even a chance she's still alive.
Lt. Joey Crosby, with Myrtle Beach Police Department, said the case remains wide open, and they have used age progression to identify Drexel. The girl was 17 when she went missing, but would now be 24.
"Officers are working very hard to bring closure to this investigation so we can find out what happened and what occurred within our city and what happened to Brittanee," Crosby said. "For all of us that have worked on this investigation, it is very much a part of and it's something that we think about daily."
Drexel disappeared from Ocean Boulevard on April 25, 2009. She was 17 years old when she traveled to Myrtle Beach from New York for spring break.
Her mother said she realized she was missing when she received a call from her equally concerned boyfriend. Surveillance video showed her leaving a hotel later that day, which is the last time anyone saw Drexel.
Wagner said the last seven years have been a roller coaster of emotion for the family, but they will keep fighting.
"Brittanee is always on our mind," she said. "And we will never forget the phone call. But we are never going to give up hope either."