Richland County remains found off I-277 missing Columbia woman - - Columbia, South Carolina |

Richland County remains found off I-277 missing Columbia woman

Betty Praylow Betty Praylow

(Columbia) Feb. 7, 2003 - Richland County Coroner Gary Watts says remains discovered Tuesday are those of a 56-year-old female from Columbia.

Watts says Betty Praylow has been missing since November 2001 after she walked away from her home in the Dentsville community.

The coroner says it's too early to determine how Praylow died, but her family says she was a diabetic who could become disoriented without her medication. Her name had been withheld while the coroner's officer notified her family.

Richland County Deputies discovered Praylow's remains Tuesday morning in a wooded neighborhood near Fontaine Road off I-77 underneath leaves and tree branches next to a creek about a mile from Praylow's home. Watts says it is possible her body had been there since she was reported missing.

It was a quiet night inside Columbia Metro Airport as workers quietly grieve the loss of Betty Praylow. Mary Porter worked alongside Praylow for years, "Very nice, my heart goes out to the family."
Praylow had just retired one month before she dissappeared after working 25 years in the airport cleaning department.

Chip Smith, who owns a local car wash has known Betty most of his life. He's had her missing posters hanging in his business since 2001, hoping for a happy ending. He says not knowing's been hard, "In some regards now that we know it's better so there's closure on it."

The discovery was something some of the long-time residents like Yvonne Gidron never expected, "Now I'm really shocked something like this would happen in my neighborhood, right behind my house, really. The kids out playing in the back and stuff. Just really shocked."

Watts says an anthropologist helped authorities collect the bones. The bones were not in a grave site.

Updated 7:37am by Chris Rees with AP

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