THE BRONX, N.Y. (PIX11) – The family of a missing Illinois woman whose cellphone was discovered in a Bronx subway station said Shamari Brantley, 22, has a large rose tattoo with a stem on her right, inner forearm.
This latest information about the identifying mark was added to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, known as NamUs, on Wednesday with the hope that someone might recognize the tattoo.
“She received the tattoo in 2022 on her 21st birthday,” said Dawn Rowe, founder of the New York State Task Force for Missing and Murdered Women and Girls of Color.
It’s described on NamUs as a “large black/white color rose tattoo on the right forearm. The flower of the rose is on the inner part of the forearm, near the elbow, and the stem extends down…toward the wrist.”
Brantley’s family said she left home in Wheaton, Illinois in mid-August and last called them on Aug. 23.
Shamari Brantley has several mental health diagnoses, including schizophrenia, multiple personalities, and bipolar disorder, according to her family. Her mother, Artimece Cotton, said Brantley often relied on music to soothe her “when she heard voices.”
“She would listen to music and walk,” her mother added.
Brantley’s family thinks the young woman hitchhiked more than 800 miles to New York.
Her mother traveled to the city in mid-September, after a woman answered Brantley’s cellphone and said she found it in the Zerega Avenue subway station at Westchester Avenue in the Bronx. Brantley’s mother was able to meet the woman and retrieve the cellphone. She also briefly met with a man who said he had contact with her daughter in early September.
Brantley’s mother, sister, and other relatives drove to New York again last Saturday.
When Dawn Rowe heard about their long drive and limited resources, she arranged for an Airbnb, so the family could extend its stay to search for Brantley.
Since PIX11 News interviewed the family on Monday, Rowe has put them in touch with New York law enforcement.