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As the first anniversary of little Faye’s abduction draws near, family ask for privacy to remember

Cayce, SC - 02/08/2021 (Paul Kirby) – Wednesday, February 10, 2021, marks one year since six-year-old Faye Marie Swetlik went missing from her home in the Churchill Heights neighborhood of Cayce. It was a day that few from the area will ever forget.

Members of the Cayce Department of Public Safety streamed into the area at first when Faye didn’t show up shortly after she got off her school bus. Once officers were able to establish that Faye had disappeared, everyone began to feel more apprehensive. Faye was missing and the situation, later determined to be a child abduction, was getting more critical with each minute she was gone.

Eventually, hundreds would be involved in the search for Faye. Before this operation was complete, many more would be touched in some way across the area, the state, and the country. As he lead the search, Cayce's Director of Public Safety Byron Snellgrove was moved by the caring of the community and all the men and women who took part in trying to bring Faye home.

Now, as the one year’s anniversary of Faye’s death draws near, Chief Snellgrove recently said, “I will forever be thankful for the immense and earnest efforts of our Cayce Public Safety officers and the more than 300 first responders that assisted us. And I am deeply appreciative of those across the nation that prayed we would find Faye. We all needed and felt those prayers and I am beyond thankful for them. As a community, we hoped, and we prayed for her safe return. We felt broken as we mourned her loss. Cayce is known as a safe community and as a community, we will continue to honor her life and her memory. Faye will forever be a part of us, and her memory will forever touch our hearts.”

As that fateful day approaches, Faye’s family has chosen to honor Faye's life and remember what a beautiful child she was. When asked recently how she would like the community to remember her daughter, Faye Swetlik’s mother said she hoped everyone would remember the smile on her face and her love and compassion for others. “Faye really wanted to be a teacher. She loved helping other people and was inquisitive, adventurous; and she was always smiling!”

Faye’s grandmother was also a huge part of her life. She says now she wants people to please consider living their lives as Faye lived hers. She stated, “Faye was kind to everyone that she met. She always had a smile on her face; she loved animals, she loved her school, her teachers and she loved her family so much. Our world will never be the same without Faye. She was truly the light of our lives.”

As the day Faye was found fast approaches, many in the community will hug their children a little closer. They will watch with a sharper eye and notice every car as it drives by their homes. Faye has been gone for almost a year and with her went a little more of the community’s trust and innocence.

Faye’s family has asked for privacy as they pass this milestone. They choose to pass the day remembering the great little girl that Faye was.

If you feel you have to do something more this week, make a donation in Faye’s name to the Dolphins at Springdale Elementary School. This was a place where Faye smiled as she learned and played. It was a safe haven, a second home, a place where Faye was happy.

Perhaps you would just like to hear the laughter of your own children as they play or take an opportunity to pray in a quite place. If so, Benton Park next to the Springdale Town Hall is set to reopen today after a major remodel. As a part of that, a special bench has been installed in Faye's honor. You really can't miss this bench; It's the one that's pink with rainbows on it. The Springdale Town Hall and Benton Park are located at 2915 Platt Springs Rd. West Columbia, SC.


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