PORT SALERNO, Fla. - "I guess the hardest part for me is at night,” Linda Parsons told NewsChannel 5's Kelley Dunn when she sat down for her first one-on-one interview since the recent arrest in the murder of her daughter 19 years ago.
"I remember curling her hair for the school picture,” she said looking at the second grade photograph of Andrea. “She wanted her hair curled that day."
A few old photos and memories of happier times are all that’s left for Linda.
"She loved climbing that tree right outside where we lived," said Linda.
Taking a look at another picture, she points out that just a week after it was taken, her 10-year-old daughter vanished.
It was July 11, 1993. With a fistful of pennies, Andrea walked to a neighborhood store for candy. It was two blocks from her Port Salerno home. She never returned.
She still remembers the details of the day. She was working at the Winn Dixie deli counter. They closed at 10 p.m. When she got home, the look on her boyfriend’s face said everything.
"I knew instantly something was wrong,” she said.
The search for Andrea began immediately, and didn't stop for months.
"I get chills just talking about it. But I was in shock back then, " said Linda.
“I remember draining the pond, digging up places, sifting through dirt. They're dug up a lot of places in Martin County, " she said.
No trace of Andrea has ever been found.
Oprah, America's Most Wanted and the news networks all wanted to talk to Linda after Andrea's disappearance.
"My feelings are Andrea is still alive,” she said on America’s Most Wanted at that time. “Deep in my heart I know that."
She remained hopeful for 19 and a half years.
Then there was the arrest of Chester Price at the end of November. He's now in jail charged with killing Andrea. Detectives aren't talking about the evidence they say link Price to this cold case.
Linda Parsons says she had never heard of Chester Price, but she's now, very familiar with his friend, Claude Davis.
Davis lived across the street from the Parsons.
"You couldn't see his camper trailer through the trees and brush it was very secluded back across the street,” she said.
Davis was arrested 4 months after Andrea disappeared. Charges of false imprisonment were dropped against him the following year because of a lack of evidence.
Davis can't be recharged in this case. He claimed to NewsChannel 5 last week that he was with Chester Price when they picked up Andrea.
He claims she wasn't forced into their van.
"She didn't ask for a ride from strangers. She didn't know him. I'm sure she didn't know him,” she said.
Davis claims he didn't kill Andrea, but admits helping hide her body.
"So that's where I took her, dug a hole and put her in it. I covered her up with a black bag and a piece of burlap sack so the dirt wouldn't go in her face. Then I said a little pray and I left,” he said.
"It makes me feel like I want to hurt the man,” she said.
Linda Parsons wants justice.
"I hope they burn in hell. I hope they know what they've done to me and my family, they're going to pay for it," said Linda.
But more than anything, she wants the answer to the question that's haunted her for more than 19 years.
"I want to know where her remains are. If she's not alive I want to bring her home. I want her back to give me some peace and closure for me and my family, " she said.
Andrea Parsons would be 29 today.
"I miss her a lot, " said Linda.
And the dream of what might have been for her little girl.
"When I'm alone and sitting on my deck and there's a full moon up there, I'm almost in a trance, and I wonder, what if Andrea is looking at the same moon. I do that all the time, " she said.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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