by: Catherine Bilkey Updated:
ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. - The biological mother of Erica Parsons said Sunday will mark three years since she's seen her daughter. Investigators say the Rowan County teen has been missing since November 2011.
Carolyn Parsons has been front and center at vigils for her daughter. She says she thought Erica Parsons was safe with adoptive parents Casey and Sandy Parsons until she was reported missing in July. Carolyn Parsons says she had gotten updates about the teen through Facebook—but hadn't seen her since Jan. 5, 2011.
"I think about the visitation pretty much all the time," Carolyn Parsons said. "And it plays over and over and over again in my mind."
She told Eyewitness News over the phone that Erica Parsons was quiet and shy but excited to see her.
"She came across the parking lot. She hugged me," Carolyn Parsons said.
Now she's just hoping to get another hug. Investigators believe that Erica Parsons is dead, according to court papers Eyewitness News obtained last week. In a warrant filed on Dec. 23, investigators say three dogs "alerted" police there were possible human remains near the red shed on her grandparent's property in October. Another dog indicated there may be human remains there in November.
Eyewitness News was told that only Erica Parsons' adoptive parents had access to that shed. Carolyn Parsons said the grim details were difficult to handle.
"My whole body was just numb," Parsons said. "I mean as a parent, as a person, as an individual, as a family member--I just keep hoping and praying that she's alive somewhere, that she's out there somewhere, that one of these days she's going to come forward."
That same hope is shared by many people in the community who continue to pray for Erica Parsons.
Click here to see more about the Erica Parsons' case.
© 2017 Cox Media Group.