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Search continues for missing Scott Co. pastor

7:46 PM, Dec 23, 2012   |    comments
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Dowell Phillips isn't one to miss church. In fact, he preached at Concord Independent Baptist each week.

"The only way he would miss is if he had to preach a funeral or something like that. Church was very important to him, especially his congregation," said Phillips' sister-in-law, Kim Newport.

His pulpit has been empty the past three Sundays, along with his family's hearts.

"His daughter's five years old. And she doesn't quite understand what's going on. She says, "Where's my daddy at? When's my daddy coming home?'" Newport said.

Those are questions Newport can't answer for his daughter and neither can the Scott County Sheriff's Office.

Phillips, 57, went for a walk on December 5th on a private road near his Helenwood home. There's been no sign of him since.

"We've been up and down this road [Helenwood Detour Road] numerous times. It's been covered extensively," said Detective Randy Lewallen of the Scott County Sheriff's Office.

In the first few days, Lewallen led a ground search for miles around his home. The Sheriff's Office has also used blood hounds, cadaver dogs, and a TBI helicopter to look for Phillips.

"We're exhausting nearly all of our resources until we get some kind of clue to work with," said Lewallen.

Lewallen does not suspect any foul play, but Phillips' family doesn't think he would disappear on his own.

"He didn't take any personal items like his medication he would have had to have. His high blood pressure medicine especially," said Newport.

The only thing he took was his debit card, which has not been used.

Now the Sheriff's Office and his family are hoping someone will come forward with information to give his little girl her Christmas wish.

"She needs her dad for Christmas," said Newport.

If you have any information on the case, you're asked to call the Scott County Sheriff's Office at 423-663-3111.

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