Mother of missing Corrie McKeague hopes inquest will answer mystery over his disappearance
- Credit: Gregg Brown
The mother of missing airman Corrie McKeague has said she hopes an inquest into her son’s case will give her family long-awaited answers over the mystery of his disappearance.
Nicola Urquhart said that she hoped the inquest would bring closure for the family, more than four years since he went missing in September 2016.
The serviceman, who was based at RAF Honington, was last seen on CCTV entering a bin loading area behind a row of shops in Bury St Edmunds.
Extensive searches across the county have been carried out since the then 23-year-old’s disappearance, although his body has never been found.
An investigation included two searches of a landfill site in Milton, Cambridgeshire, while the entire investigation is said to have cost several million pounds.
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“It has been something that we have been looking to do for quite some time,” said Mrs Urquhart of the inquest.
“I didn’t actually know what I needed or what I was looking for.”
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After consulting lawyers, the family came to the conclusion that an inquest was the best route for them to take.
The family started to get things moving but proceedings were delayed by the coronavirus.
However, she said she was pleased the case will now be heard by the Coroner’s Service in Suffolk.
“I’m absolutely delighted,” said Mrs Urquhart.
“We are genuinely really pleased that we have been able to get an inquest.
“This is not about us trying to apportion blame. It’s about us as a family knowing we have done absolutely everything we can.”
Mrs Urquhart said she believes the inquest may be painful, but ultimately positive for her family.
“I think it’s going to be difficult going through everything again,” said Mrs Urquhart.
“Ultimately I think it will be a very positive thing for my sons and our families.”
Mrs Urquhart said she still hoped that her son’s body might be found.
“I’m still looking to find Corrie but it’s his body that I would be bringing home and not my son back into our lives,” said Mrs Urquhart.
“It’s not since it’s gone to a cold case that we have had to start to get that into our heads, it’s been a much longer process than that.”
Mrs Urquhart hopes that the inquest will help to spare other families the same pain they have been through.
“I don’t know what to expect,” said Mrs Urquhart.
“I believe it will give us the type of closure we are looking for to know we have done what we can.
“Then it’s the case of is there anything we can do to prevent somebody else from going through what we have gone through.”
A pre-inquest review hearing is due to be held in early 2021, with the full inquest set to follow later in the year.