Dr. Phil pays tribute to Aniah Blanchard on show

State / Regional

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — A week after the remains of Aniah Blanchard were found in Macon County, a well-known TV personality is paying tribute to her life.

Toward the end of his show Friday, Dr. Phillip C. McGraw of the syndicated “Dr. Phil” show updated his viewers on what had happened to Blanchard. Weeks earlier, McGraw had Blanchard’s mother, Angela Harris, and stepfather, Walt, on the show to talk about the search for her.

Blanchard was last seen alive Oct. 23 at a gas station in Auburn. An autopsy report shows that she sustained a gunshot wound. Ibraheem Yazeed, 29, of Montgomery, has been charged with her kidnapping and death.

“It breaks our heart to give this update and our thoughts and prayers are with this young woman’s family,” McGraw said. “You know, it’s just not the natural order of things for parents to bury their children. The loss of a loved one is the greatest stress that we ever face in our lives and when that loved one is one of our children and when that child is taken suddenly and, even worse, violently, it is the absolute end of the stress continuum. I will never say that I know how these folks feel or how anyone feels that loses a child, but I do know that it is unimaginable and that the pain is terrible.”

During the show, McGraw encouraged Blanchard’s family to focus on her life rather than her death.

“She clearly brought so much joy and laughter to your life and lifted you up so much,” he said. “It would be a tragedy if that was all drowned out by the tragic loss of her life.”


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