Asia Cowell is the missing teenager from Norfolk, Virginia, who was found dead on September 24, according to Facebook posts from family members. She was 17 years old.
Cowell’s aunt wrote in a Facebook post, “The Cowell Family is mourning the loss of our sweet Asia. We would like to thank the community for the outpouring of love and support!” The day before Cowell’s death was announced, the same aunt wrote on Facebook, “I seem to be stuck in this dream that I can’t get out of. My heart is broken in pieces, like crumbs scattered everywhere and I can’t think clear because you’re not here…and that’s not okay. It doesn’t make any sense.”
A post on the Facebook page, Help Bring Asia Home, said that a candlelight vigil will be held at Granby High School at 7101 Granby Street in Norfolk, Virginia, on the night of September 25. Cowell was a student at Granby High School.
Cowell Was Last Seen on Labor Day
Cowell was last seen on September 7, 2020, in the 7400 block of W. Kenmore Avenue in Norfolk, Virginia. Cowell was described as weighing around 158 pounds and standing at 5-foot-2 inches, the Norfolk Police Department said in a September 11 tweet.
Cowell’s aunt told ABC Norfolk on September 13, “It’s the not knowing that’s killing us right now. You just keep going for her because I won’t be satisfied until I know something.”
Children of Color Makeup 14% of Children in the United States But Makeup 37% of Missing Children
In November 2019, CNN reported on a study that showed missing white children attracted more media attention than missing children of color. The CNN report said that of the 424,066 missing children reported in the United States in 2018, 37 percent were Black. Black children make up 14 percent of all children in the United States, according to government statistics.
The vice president of the missing child division at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children Robert Lowery told CNN, “I think there’s a false belief that white children make up the biggest number of missing children when in fact (proportionally) it’s just the opposite.” The CNN report went on to mention the possibility of distrust between law enforcement and people of color, leading to a reluctance to report missing persons. The co-founder of the Black and Missing Foundation told the network, Natalie Wilson, “There’s a sense of distrust between law enforcement and the minority community.”