“I knew something was wrong,” Roxanne Fowler told Dateline. “It’s a sister thing.”
It’s been almost one year since Roxanne’s older sister, 27-year-old Olivia Fowler, was last seen in Meriwether County, Georgia.
“It’s been hell,” Roxanne said. “There’s just literally no sign of her.”
The Fowler sisters grew up in Woodbury, Georgia, within Meriwether County. “It’s a really small town,” Roxanne said. “We only have one grocery store.”
Despite the size of the town, Roxanne told Dateline she and her sister would always find things to do. “We would always ride around in the car, listen to music,” she said.
Roxanne told Dateline they grew even closer when they both became pregnant around the same time. “She loves her family,” Roxanne said. “She never had many friends; she was just always a family person.” Olivia’s three young children live with Olivia and Roxanne’s cousin, who has custody of them.
“[Olivia] didn’t really have stable housing,” Roxanne said, so she split her time between their mother’s house in Manchester and their father’s house in Woodbury, about 15 minutes away from each other.
Roxanne told Dateline she spoke with her sister on the morning of August 12, 2021 at their mother’s house, and everything seemed fine. “My mom had babysat my son and I was getting ready to leave for work,” Roxanne told Dateline. “[Olivia] was fixing to get in the shower. She asked me to use my phone so she could listen to music.” Roxanne added that Olivia did not have a phone at the time. “I told her that I had to go to work -- I was already running behind. So I told her I loved her and I left.”
That was the last time Roxanne saw her sister.
That night, Olivia was staying at her boyfriend’s house on Short Street in Manchester. “He said that he was going to bed,” Roxanne recalled Olivia’s boyfriend telling her. “She told him that she was going on the porch to smoke a cigarette.”
Roxanne told Dateline that Olivia’s boyfriend told her that when he woke up the next morning on August 13, Olivia wasn’t there. “Local residents that live on that same street said they seen her that morning walking at 7:38 a.m.,” Roxanne said. “Then a [Georgia Department of Natural Resources] officer spotted her,” Roxanne said. “That was at 10:00 a.m.”
Roxanne said she believes Olivia was headed to “a little place called ‘The Cove,’” in Manchester. “It’s just a part of town, “Roxanne told Dateline. “That was the last time she was seen.”
Roxanne told Dateline she got a concerning call from her mother on Saturday, August 14. “She was like, ‘Hey, have you talked to Olivia?’ And I was like, ‘No,’” Roxanne said. “She said, ‘Your daddy just came down here looking for her.’”
Roxanne said as soon as her mother told her Olivia hadn’t been seen since Friday, she immediately jumped into action. “I said, “Well, I’m fixing to make a police report,’” Roxanne told Dateline, adding that she called her cousin for assistance. “She called and made the police report.”
Their cousin reported Olivia missing on August 14, 2021.
The Meriwether County Sheriff’s Office is investigating Olivia’s disappearance. Dateline spoke with Chief Deputy Byron Hadley who confirmed that Olivia was last seen on August 13, 2021 around 10:30 a.m. by a Georgia Department of Natural Resources Officer on Pebblebrook Road. Chief Deputy Hadley told Dateline that their department has “executed over 20 search warrants,” and “checked multiple counties and states" for Olivia. He added that they have also done “land and air operations” related to the case and have had “K-9 searches.” Chief Deputy Hadley stressed to Dateline that they have “worked the case diligently.”
“We’re actively looking and seeking any information we possibly can,” Hadley told Dateline. He said that as of now, “there is no direct information related” to foul play but their office is not ruling it out.
“I know that they’re diligently working on the case,” Roxanne said of investigators. “So hopefully we can get answers soon.”
In May of 2022, it was announced that the FBI joined the search for Olivia. The Atlanta Division of the FBI posted on their website that they and “the Meriwether County Sheriff’s Office are seeking the public's assistance in locating Olivia Fowler. Fowler, a mother of three, was last seen on August 13, 2021, walking along Pebblebrook Road (outside the town of Manchester) in Meriwether County, Georgia.” The FBI said Olivia also “has ties to Meriwether County, Harris County, Talbot County, and Upson County, Georgia.”
Roxanne told Dateline it is extremely unlike her sister to just disappear. “It’s very, very odd,” Roxanne said. “It’s a really small town and everybody talks.” Roxanne said she believes someone knows something, but is refusing to speak up. Roxanne stressed that Olivia does not have a history of mental health issues.
“It’s been a really tough time on me, my family, her children,” Roxanne said. “It’s been rough.”
But Roxanne told Dateline they have not given up the search for Olivia. “We passed out flyers, we have campaign-style yards signs,” Roxanne said. “Just trying to reach out to everybody.”
“If you know anything, just come forward,” Roxanne pleaded. “I’m getting married in September, so I would love for her to be there.”
Olivia is 5’2”, 105 lbs., with dirty blonde hair with blonde highlights and green eyes. She has a missing tooth on the right side of her mouth and has the words ‘I love you’ tattooed in the elbow crease of her right arm. Roxanne said the ‘I’ is a bit faded.
According to Roxanne, Olivia was last seen wearing a tie-dye shirt, shorts, and flip-flops.
Anyone with information regarding Olivia’s disappearance is asked to contact their local FBI office or the Meriwether County Sheriff’s Office at (706) 672-4489.
Updated to include comment from the Meriwether County Sheriff’s Office.