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'It still hurts as bad as it did the first year;' TBI raises awareness on 9-year-old cold case

18-year-old Nieko Lisi vanished from Franklin 9 years ago
Posted at 4:33 PM, Oct 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-01 21:32:42-04

FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WTVF) — It's been 9 years since 18-year-old Nieko Lisi vanished from Franklin.

Time goes by, but the pain is still present for his mom, Monica Button. "Very much so. It’s funny, I can go to work and I can talk about things. I can have a pretty normal life, and whenever it comes to Nieko I’m destroyed," Button said, "It’s 9 years and it still hurts as bad as it did the first year.”

Lisi was last seen on October 1st, 2011 on Flintlock Drive in Williamson County. He had just traveled from their home in New York to Franklin. He had friends in the area since he attended Franklin High School in 11th grade. In 2016, his dismantled truck was recovered from a garage in East Nashville according to Button.

Button said, "The garage was owned by a family from Franklin."

Since then, the case has gone cold. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation recently shared a video to raise awareness about the case. Apparently, several witnesses in the case are now dead, or have moved on with their lives. Button said, "Somebody knows, and people are pretty tight lipped."

She's not seeking closure as she believes he's dead, "because you can’t ever close a book on a person that you love, a person that you gave birth to, you don’t close that book and never talk about that book again."

At this point, Button said she just wants to bury her son’s remains. "My son deserves to be with this family, not discarded like trash. And there are people in the community there that know exactly what happened to my son."

A TBI spokesperson said a few tips have come in since they shared the video about the cold case on social media. If you have any information on the disappearance of Nieko Lisi call 1-800-TBI-FIND.