Danny and Christine O’Dell were always promised they would get to see their three granddaughters.
When they paid their daughter’s electric bill.
When they bailed their daughter out of jail.
But the visits never happened. And the body of one of the granddaughters was found Tuesday morning in a detached garage in Centreville, badly decomposed after about four years.
The O’Dells said Wednesday they hadn’t seen the granddaughters for more than two years. They found out Monday night they would never see their youngest granddaughter, Alysha, alive again.
The O’Dells said their daughter called them from Las Vegas and told them about Alysha — the girl found Tuesday morning in the garage of an abandoned house in Centreville.
Their daughter married Jason Quate in 2003 after the two met at the Smokey Bones restaurant in Fairview Heights, where she worked as a waitress and he worked as a dishwasher.
“She was raised out here, and she went to church,” Danny O’Dell said. “She got with him, and it was bad ever since.”
Alysha was the youngest of three girls, each born 16 months apart, Christine O’Dell said.
When the girls were younger, they would come and stay with their grandparents, who live in a rural area of Bond County, the O’Dells said.
Alysha loved to help her grandmother do dishes and ride the lawnmower with her grandfather. She played with the O’Dells’ poodle, Shadow.
“She never wanted to go home,” Danny O’Dell said.
Quate and his wife got behind on the electric bill, so the O’Dells helped out. But one day in 2013, the O’Dells, who were on a fixed income, told them they couldn’t continue. It was then that Jason Quate stopped letting them see their grandchildren.
“I stood in the driveway and shouted the F-bomb. I called him out. I lost it. I was so frustrated,” Danny O’Dell said.
I stood in the driveway and shouted the F-bomb. I called him out. I lost it. I was so frustrated.
Danny O’Dell, grandfather of deceased girl
Jason Quate rarely worked, the O’Dells said. It was up to their daughter to support the family.
Christine and Danny O’Dell grew concerned about their daughter and granddaughters. One day Danny O’Dell called the granddaughters’ school and was told the girls hadn’t attended in more than a year.
The O’Dells said they love their daughter and granddaughters and know there is a lot to face.
“She’s had this on her heart all this time,” Danny O’Dell said. “She’s going through hell right now.”
She’s had this on her heart all this time. She’s going through hell right now.
Alysha’s body was found after the O’Dells’ daughter went to a women’s shelter in Las Vegas. She told authorities that Quate had forced her into prostitution and killed Alysha, leaving the child’s body in a container at the Centreville garage. Las Vegas police have said the surviving girls had limited contact with people outside the home and that their social skills were not age-appropriate.
During that Monday night phone call, Danny O’Dell’s daughter told her father she had one wish.
“Dad, when they get done, I want to be able to bring my little girl back and bury her at home,” Danny O’Dell recalled her saying.