The wife of a pastor in the US state of Kansas has been found dead after going missing for two weeks.
Marilane Carter, 36, was last seen on 1st August when she decided to visit relatives in Birmingham, Alabama, and seek help for her mental health issues. After initially purchasing a plane ticket, Carter made the last-minute decision to drive the 685-mile journey, with investigators saying she then travelled through Missouri and stopping at a Quality Inn hotel in the town of West Plains for a few hours. She was last seen at a petrol station in West Memphis, Arkansas, before disappearing.
After a two-week-long search, Marilane's uncle discovered the body inside a shipping container located in a field off Interstate 55 in eastern Arkansas after tracking his niece's phone. Given the evidence, police suspect that Marilane died by suicide.
Crittenden County Sheriff Mike Allen told AL.com: “We’re just waiting on the results and praying for the family. They sure have been through it.”
Marilane was married to Rev Adam Carter, the lead pastor at Leawood Baptist Church in Kansas. The church confirmed her death on Facebook, writing:
"It is with very heavy hearts that we share that Marilane Carter has passed away. Her vehicle and body were found Tuesday in the West Memphis area. Law enforcement says that foul play is not suspected. Please keep Pastor Adam and the children in your prayers. Many of you have already been asking if there is anything else you can do to help the family at this time. The best thing that we can do right now is pray for them. They don't have any immediate physical needs. If that changes, we'll be sure to let the LBC Faith Family know."
Adam and Marilane Carter. Source: Facebook
On a website dedicated to Marilane's memory, her mother Marlene Mesler wrote that her daughter "had a deep love of others that showed itself in special ways".
"As a little girl, she was worried that her grandfather might not be a Christian because he left the room whenever the topic of God came up," Marlene explained. "She devised a plan. She waited until he was comfortable in his chair, then she sat on his lap so he couldn’t leave and told him all about Jesus."
She continued:"Marilane was drawn to helping others who were experiencing life crises, so she got her Master’s of Divinity and became a hospital chaplain. I remember how fulfilled she was as she ministered to those in need. She told me of cradling a newborn baby that was stillborn. She held the infant in her arms and marveled at his perfection. Marilane knew that the mother needed someone to acknowledge the baby’s beauty so that she wouldn’t fear giving birth to another child.
"Marilane, you are a hero, both in our family and far beyond. There’s a hole in my heart that nothing can fill. I sorely miss your daily calls, your gentle spirit, and your sweet laughter. Heaven has become closer to me now because it holds you. Never before has it been so real. Please know how deeply you are loved. I wish I could hold you tightly right now. I treasure the thought of our reunion one day when I can hug my girl with all my heart again!”"
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