He's a father, a grandfather; and to Dorothy Sharpe, he's her older brother.
"I would not have imagined that he wouldn't be here," says Dorothy.
Since Edward Phillips' disappearance, Dorothy and her sisters wait for answers inside the home Edward lived in. The difference now: the bed is empty, his shoes haven't moved since Wednesday and he's up-to-date on his daily medication, except the days after he vanished.
With little to no leads, the family's worst nightmare is finding out something bad happened to their brother. "I'm afraid it has," says Dorothy tearfully. "I'm afraid it has because he doesn't ever do that. He doesn't ever leave home."
Edward's older sister Pearl Holmes adds, "He thought someone else was here besides him. He was seeing things, and so he might have gone outside and decided to walk somewhere. (It) doesn't seem like him."
Crews made another attempt to find him early Friday, but the rural conditions are making the search difficult.
"The terrain is thick and overgrown with thorns and briars," says Lt. Craig Shelton with the Smith County Sheriff's Department. "There's places in there we couldn't get through with horses, much less 4-wheelers."
Back at the home, the Phillips Family continues to hold on to hope and sees this situation as a test of faith.
"We're hopeful. Prayerful," says Pearl. "We're just hopeful and trying not to think that he won't be found alive... he will be."
Christine Nelson, reporting. email@example.com
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