Millersville mom dead, 4-month-old still missing

Shauna Marie Fryer
Shauna Marie Fryer

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Authorities are intensifying their search for a missing four-month-old from Robertson County after the body of her mother was pulled from the Cumberland River in Nashville over the weekend.

Metro police spokesperson Don Aaron said Tuesday afternoon the body spotted by a passerby in the river near downtown Saturday night is that of 28-year-old Shauna Marie Fryar.

He said there was no visible trauma to her body and an autopsy would determine how she died. It was not known whether Fryar died before entering the water.

Cumberland River
Cumberland River

Fryar and her infant daughter, Zaylee Grace, were last seen last Sunday, May 1, at their home in Millersville, located about 20 miles north of Nashville, off Interstate 65.

Fryar’s husband, who is not the child’s father, told Millersville police that he left his Millersville apartment to go to the store around 9 a.m. that morning and when he returned, his wife and Zaylee were gone, although her vehicle, cell phone, wallet and the child’s diaper bag were still at the residence.

Detectives have confirmed that Fryar and the child were fine on Saturday, April 30, when they visited a relative in Pegram.

On Monday, Millersville police activated an endangered child alert for Zaylee. The alert was upgraded to an Amber Alert Tuesday afternoon.

“We need to find this baby quickly,” Millersville Police Chief Robbie Williams said.

Authorities told Nashville’s News 2 in addition to the four-month-old, Fryar has six other children.

Zaylee Grace Fryer
Zaylee Grace Fryer

Police have been told that Fryar had a history of drug addiction, and that she may have been trying to obtain illegal drugs around the time she was last seen.

Aaron said a Metro police helicopter has been checking the area in and around the Cumberland River for any sign of Zaylee, although there was no immediate evidence to suggest that she is in the water.

He added the baby’s father was in the Robertson County jail at the time mother and daughter disappeared and is still there so he is not considered a suspect.

Neighbors told Nashville’s News 2 they are worried about the missing infant.

“It’s kind of scary when you have kids, because you don’t know if it was somebody she was related to or some psycho running the roads,” neighbor Rachel Dixon said.

She added, “It’s hurtful, I mean it makes you freak out and wonder what would you do if it was your own. I hope they take every resource to help find [her].”

Zaylee has black hair and brown eyes. She weighs approximately 12 pounds, is 35 inches long and has a quarter-size birthmark on her right leg.

Anyone with information on her whereabouts is urged to call the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation at 1-800-TBI-FIND.

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