Video: Holloway's grandmother

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updated 8/16/2005 1:29:00 PM ET 2005-08-16T17:29:00

The disappearance of Natalee Holloway in Aruba over 2 months ago still remains unsolved. Christene Holloway, Natalee‘s grandmother, joined Rita Cosby in this exclusive interview, speaking out for the first time on national television.  John Walsh, host of 'America's Most Wanted' and the father of an abducted and murdered child, joined the discussion to give Christene give advice on how to solve the mystery of her granddaughter's disappearance.

RITA COSBY, HOST 'LIVE & DIRECT': Mrs. Holloway, how do you get through the ups and downs, the daily ups and downs of this case?

CHRISTENE HOLLOWAY, NATALEE HOLLOWAY‘S GRANDMOTHER:  Well, it‘s just with the help of God.  I have a great faith.  All of my family does.  And we pray every day for Natalee.  And that‘s where we get our strength.

COSBY:  You knew Natalee well.  In fact, you saw her just a few days before her graduation.  What were her spirits like?  This was just a few days before she disappeared, right?

HOLLOWAY: Yes.  She was really happy.  When we went back to see her, she was getting ready for graduation.  And that‘s the last time I saw her.

COSBY: You know, many of us feel like we know her.  We‘ve seen, you know, so many pictures of her.  What a beautiful girl.  Tell us a little bit about her, what made her just such a special granddaughter to you.

HOLLOWAY: Well, she was always special.  She had that quick grin, just like her dad.  She looks a lot like her dad.  And she‘s always been quiet.  She‘s—she was just a fantastic granddaughter.

COSBY:  Speaking of—you know, you talked about your son.  I understand it‘s hard for to you talk to your son about the details of this case.  Why is that?

HOLLOWAY:  Yes, it is, because I know he‘s hurting.  It‘s been hard on all of us.

COSBY:  I‘m sure.  How frustrated are you, too, here we are, two months, and still so few details?

HOLLOWAY:  Well, we‘re all real close.  The whole family is.  All the family has joined together since this has happened, and we‘ve been together a lot in, you know, the search for Natalee.  And we all have been to Aruba and back, and we, you know, talk and visit a lot.

COSBY: And I‘m sure it‘s frustrating, though, too, because still so few leads.  And I‘m sure there‘s some frustration with Aruban authorities on your part too, right?

HOLLOWAY:  Well, I think they‘re doing all they can as of now.  We met nice people over there when we spent 10 days.  I really liked Aruba.  I liked the people there.  And I think everybody is doing all they can, working very hard, you know, on the search for Natalee.

COSBY: Well, Mrs. Holloway, stick with us, if you could, because I want to bring in now into the conversation a man who knows firsthand what it‘s like to search for a missing child, John Walsh, a dear friend of mine, the host of “America‘s Most Wanted.”  And he joins us live.  John, great to see you.  We still have Mrs. Holloway with us.  What would you like to say to her?  You‘ve been in this situation before.

JOHN WALSH, HOST, “AMERICA‘S MOST WANTED”:  Well, first of all, I have great admiration for Beth Holloway and all of the family and friends that have been back and forth from Aruba.  And Christene, please don‘t give up.  I mean, this story, Natalee‘s disappearance, is still in the news because of one predominant factor, and that‘s the Holloway family not giving up until they get some answers, not leaving that island until they find out what happened to Natalee.

COSBY:  Do you feel, John, obviously, you know, even in your own case, it is key for these families to get out there and fight?  You know, it‘s the families that actually get out there.  They‘re able to get the message through the media and others that can make a difference, right?

WALSH:  Oh, it makes a huge difference.  The families who can‘t muster the strength or don‘t have the savvy to go out there and use the media are the ones who don‘t get the coverage.  I mean, the Holloways have single-handedly turned Natalee‘s case into a primetime issue because of their perseverance and their demand to know what happened to their daughter.

And the not knowing is what‘s killing this family, and I say—the one piece of advice I‘d give them—you‘re on the right track.  Remember who the victim is.  Natalee is the victim.  She‘s the one who‘s out there somewhere, and that they have to stay until they get some answers.

And I know that they have great strength and great courage, but now is the real tough, tough time, and lots of people give up and they leave, but this family is hanging in there.  And that‘s the only thing they can do.  The only reason, I believe, the Aruban authorities are going to this extent and doing what they‘re doing now, which I say is way too little, way too late, is because of this family.

COSBY:  I agree.  And Mrs. Holloway, too, as you hear this, I don‘t get any sense that any of are you ready to give up, is that right?

HOLLOWAY:  No, we‘re not going to give up until we find her.

COSBY:  And what does keep you going?  You talked about the faith, but this family seems so strong, so—you know, so much love there in this family.

HOLLOWAY:  Yes, there is.  And we pray every day.  We pray every day for Natalee‘s return or, you know, something to come up, to lead us to Natalee.  And we are.  We all—have a strong faith in God.

COSBY:  Well, it‘s been inspirational to all of us, and we‘re praying that you get some answers soon.  And Mrs. Holloway, we thank you for being with us

Watch 'Rita Cosby Live & Direct' each night at 9 p.m. ET on MSNBC.

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