YONKERS, N.Y. — A missing persons’ case has morphed into a possible murder investigation.
A mother has been the object of an intense search in Westchester County, and her family is pleading for help to find her.
Ivy Mantell’s family has been grappling with her hard fall and sudden disappearance.
“Every day I get up and all I think about is my sister,” her sister, Corrine Conrad, said.
“She’s our family; she’s our blood,” added Laura Castillo, the victim’s cousin.
Mantell looks like pretty executive secretary and proud mother in one photo, but became the haggard face on the cover a missing persons’ folder in a detectives’ squad room. She was last seen, they said, with a boyfriend on the streets of Yonkers a year ago in June, 2011.
“He never offered to help us. He never came forward to help us. And now he’s lawyered up,” Conrad said.
Mantell’s mental health cracked under the strain of raising an autistic boy alone, her family said. Her husband left when the child was young and she began to spiral down as the boy reached his teens. He’s now institutionalized. At 58 years of age she was trying to get him back when she suddenly vanished.
“If she died of natural causes we would’ve found her already,” Yonkers Det. John Geiss said.
Yonkers police searched abandoned buildings, fields and wooded areas. They even put divers in the river without success. They also conducted searches on Long Island and upstate, but now believe the body is somewhere close to the area where she vanished.
The cops and the family are making a public appeal because they believe someone in the city knows more than they’re saying.
“I think there’s a population of people in downtown Yonkers that really knows what happened and where Ivy is,” Lt. Joseph Monaco said.
“All that is done in the dark will eventually be brought to light and our family will never rest until we learn the truth,” Castillo added.
Mantell’s autistic son, Taylor, is now 21 years old. The family said he asks for his mother all the time, but doesn’t seem to be able to process the concept that she may never be coming back. The family has offered a $10,000 reward just for the location of her body.
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