Family still holds out hope for missing woman

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FENTON (WJRT) — (02/06/10) — It has been nearly a year since a Fenton woman vanished from her apartment.

Police still don’t have any solid leads, but her family still hopes for her safe return.

Randa Jawhari was last seen a year ago next week in her Fenton apartment on Shiawassee Avenue.

Her family is now desperate for closure.

It’s said losing a child is a parent’s worst nightmare. For Anisse Jawhari, not knowing the whereabouts of her daughter is even worse. “If she is dead, I want to know. If she is alive, I want to know.”

Forty-three-year-old Randa Jawhari disappeared last February. Since then, birthdays and holidays have come and gone, but the Jawhari family remains stranded in time.

‘It’s like the world keeps living, but we have stopped on that day. Until we know what happened to my sister, we can’t go on,” Jawhari’s sister Rocky said.

A sketch of a so-called person of interest was released several months ago, but it hasn’t brought police any new leads.

The family set up a Facebook page in Randa’s honor. On it are messages of hope, prayers of support and pleas for help to find her. “I feel like we can let our emotions out we can talk to her, or talk to whoever knows anything,” said Rocky.

There is a billboard along U.S. 23 and posters still hang on business windows throughout the community that is also looking for answers. “It almost comes up almost every day in conversation. Any news, ya know? Have they heard anything? There are no clues, so that makes it doubly agonizing,” business owner Elizabeth Dickens said.

Brother Sam Jawhari says the family needs to know the fate of their loved one. “You can deal with anything when you know someone passed. You deal with it, but it just eats you alive. Is someone holding her hostage? Is she dead on the side of the road? All these things keep playing in your mind.”

Fenton police ask anyone with information to come forward.

(Copyright ©2010 WJRT-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

A year late, family still searching for missing Randa Jawhari

The following story was originally posted at mlive.com:

A year late, family still searching for missing Randa Jawhari

By Laura Misjak | The Flint Journal

February 06, 2010, 7:00AM

Thursday marks the year anniversary of the day that Randa Jawhari went missing from her Fenton apartment. With no new leads, Naheda (left) and Rocky Jawhari (right) and their four other siblings and parents continue the search for their sister.

jawhari-mg-2846jpg-1f75d53b8fb13743_largeFENTON, Michigan — On the 11th day of every month, Naheda Jawhari has a hard time getting out of bed. Diana Anderson feels paralyzed those days. Anissa Jawhari will lose sleep.It’s not simply a coincidence. The seven siblings and parents of Randa Jawhari find it hard to function every month that’s gone by without her.

“I don’t even realize what’s going on, then I realize it’s the 11th,” said Diana Anderson, 37, Randa’s younger sister. “It washes over me. We are so close, but at the same time, you carry each other’s pain and burden. You fall apart.”Randa Jawhari

It’s been nearly a year since Randa Jawhari disappeared from her Shiawassee Avenue apartment in Fenton.

There were no signs of foul play, no evidence of why she left. Randa seems to have vanished, her family says, leaving behind everything but a bathrobe.

“She called each and every one of us eight times a day,” said Naheda Jawhari. “And if we didn’t answer, she’d leave a never-ending message.”

Randa’s mother, Anissa Jawhari, knew something was wrong when she hadn’t heard from her daugher by 7 a.m. on Feb. 11, 2009.

Randa’s daughter, Mattilyn, 7, lives with Anissa Jawhari, and Randa would call every morning before Mattilyn went to school, Anissa said.

That morning she didn’t.

“Randa can not function without her family,” said her brother, Sam Jawhari, 50. “She needed us and she knew it.”

Fenton police are searching for a man seen with Randa a few months before she went missing.
Randa, 43, has bipolar disorder and suffered from bouts of depression. Family members say she wouldn’t leave her daughter, and when she didn’t return for Mattilyn’s birthday in April, a little more hope was lost.Randa is artistic, having written a book of poems illustrated with sketches and paintings she had done. She was once an aspiring actress, had a small role in the 1994 film “True Lies,” and taught acting classes at the Rainbow Connection in Flint.

The days following Randa’s disappearance, police and volunteers scoured fields, roadways and other areas. A helicopter searched overhead for her. Police have followed up every tip they’ve had, said Fenton police Detective Ron Skarzynski said.

Police have few leads to follow. The tips have dried up. Police are seeking any information about a man seen with Randa a few months before she went missing.

The man was seen with Randa at a dental appointment and described as clean cut and 30 to 35 years old. He was wearing a long, black leather jacket and silver chains around his neck.
Skarzynski is hoping to find the man to at least rule him out as a suspect.

“It’s not a crime to go missing,” he said. “Nobody has called us with any information of seeing her. … It’s starting to make us think she’s not in the area.”

This is the only missing person case of this magnitude the Fenton police department has handled in recent history, Skarzynski said.

For the family, any information at all will be helpful.

“I went to a funeral, and I was jealous,” Anderson said. “That family at least had closure. There’s no closure.”

For now, Randa’s information is on a billboard that hangs over U.S. 23 and a Web site, www.findranda.org. The family is offering a $6,000 reward in the case.

“We just don’t want her forgotten,” Naheda Jawhari said. “We are stuck. We are here in limbo.”

Find Randa Jawhari

  • Randa Jawhari, 43, is 5-foot-1 and 100 pounds.
  • She was discovered missing from her Fenton apartment on Feb. 11, 2009.
  • Police are seeking information on a man last seen with Randa in fall 2008.
  • More details, www.findranda.org.
  • Call Fenton police at (810) 629-5311 with any information.