Grandmother of missing 8-year-old Bennettsville girl pleads for child's return

Grandmother of missing 8-year-old Bennettsville girl pleads for child's return

MARLBORO COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Five days later, and police are still looking for 8 year-old Iyana Lowery, who went missing from her home on Craig Circle in Bennettsville.

It was this same home where Lowery's mother, Ella Shantrica Lowery, was found dead.

The young girl's grandmother, Dolores Lowery, said it has been a nightmare that she can't wake up from.  She is just waiting for an answer about Iyana.

"I love her. She is a gifted little angel," Dolores Lowery said. "She loves doing hair, she loves doing little makeup, she loves doing things little girls normally do."

Dewayne Bright, 36, is behind bars and charged in connection with her daughter Ella Lowery's murder.

"My daughter dated him just for a short period of time and that relation had been over for a long time," Dolores Lowery said. "I guess sometimes people just don't want to let people go, you know, but I never would have thought in a million years something like this would have happened."

Now, Dolores Lowery is preparing to bury her only child and wondering about whether she will have to bury her granddaughter or not.

"I think I would give my arms, my legs, whatever just to have my daughter and my granddaughter," she said.

The support has stretched beyond the community of Bennettsville. Lowery said she can feel the prayers in her heart and is thankful for the support from loved ones. It is helping to get her through this time.

Iyana Lowery is a student at Bennettsville Primary School. Principal Gail Redding said the entire school is praying for the girl's immediate and safe return home.

"If you have any grandchildren, you got a gift from God," Dolores Lowery said. "Any mother with children, mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, whatever, treasure your children because that's a gift from God."

The family is holding a funeral on Monday at 2 p.m. at Sawmill Baptist church in Bennettsville for Ella Lowery.

The Marlboro County Sheriff's Office is working with investigators from the FBI and the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division.

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