Two years ago today Florida 2-year-old Caylee Anthony vanished, sparking what would become one of the nation's highest profile murder cases and beginning a time of intense and painful scrutiny that has seared the entire Anthony family, Caylee's grandparents said today.
"The last two years have been just unbearable," an emotional George Anthony told "Good Morning America" in an exclusive interview today as he sat alongside his wife, Cindy Anthony. "To think about the last time we saw Caylee and Casey together, hear her voice, to see her little eyes and get a hug and kiss from her. It's not easy."
Caylee disappeared on June 15, 2008, but was not reported missing by her mother, Casey Anthony, until a month later.
In October of that year Casey was charged with her daughter's murder and in December the toddler's body was found less than a mile from the Anthony home. The intervening months have been full of court hearings and controversies, public protests and personal struggles.
"We've been dealing with this almost as long as Caylee was alive, because Caylee wasn't quite 3 when this started," Caylee's grandmother Cindy Anthony said. "So it seems like this nightmare has lasted longer than the moments than we had with her. That makes it very, very difficult.
"And I miss the last three years that I could have had with her, or the last two years. And then thinking about her starting school..," Cindy said before breaking into tears.
Though she maintains her daughter Casey is innocent and has "faith in the system," Cindy Anthony said that she did initially consider that Casey could have played a part in Caylee's disappearance. Acknowledging that a jury might feel the same way, Cindy Anthony said, "Anything can happen" when Casey goes to trial in the spring.
"I mean the thought did cross our mind in the very beginning. There may have been an accident," Cindy said. But Cindy said she dismissed the thought, even though Casey refused to tell her where Caylee was.
"I'm not angry about it so much as I am frustrated because I might be able to better understand why she's where she's at now. Because, I still truly believe that she is innocent," the grandmother said. "There's got to be a motive there that's much greater than this whole picture."
Cindy acknowledged that her daughter lied to investigators early on, but said nothing proves she did anything more than that.
"A liar doesn't make you a murderer," she said.
Many people felt differently and for months, protesters were a common sight outside the Anthony home.
The trial has made the family famous and turned their home into something of a Florida landmark.
"People drive from New Jersey or Wisconsin or whatever to come out and we're kind of like on the Disney route," Cindy said. "They come in and they want to see, you know, take a picture of our house or come in and say they've met us or whatever."
Cindy Anthony also backed off statements she made in a panicked 911 call in 2008 at the outset of the case in which she said the car Casey drove smelled like "there's been a dead body in there," saying that she was only trying to get police to respond quickly.