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Thursday 14 November 2019

'I say good morning to her photo every day' - husband of Tina Satchwell issues tearful appeal on one year anniversary

Richard Satchwell pictured at his home holding a photo of wife Tina
Richard Satchwell pictured at his home holding a photo of wife Tina

Ralph Riegel

THE husband of missing woman Tina Satchwell (45) said he was absolutely heartbroken on the first anniversary of his wife's disappearance, revealing he now says 'good morning' to a photo of his beloved Tina every day in the sitting room of their Cork home.

Richard Satchwell wept as he spent the day of the anniversary with Tina's beloved pet dog, Ruby, and prayed for a breakthrough in the case which has baffled gardaí over the past 12 months.

The English-born truck driver said his life has been "hell" over the past 12 months since his wife vanished without trace from their Youghal, Co Cork home.

He said he remains convinced Tina is alive - and issued a fresh appeal for anyone who may have information about Tina's movements or whereabouts to contact the Gardaí.

Tina Satchwell (46) went missing from her Youghal home in Co Cork on March 20, 2017
Tina Satchwell (46) went missing from her Youghal home in Co Cork on March 20, 2017

"Every morning I wake up I am waiting for the door to open or the phone to go (to say Tina has been found safe).

"That is a daily thing for me - even now.

"I feel sadness and hope - that is all I have. I don't have anything else," he told TV3.

"When I get up every morning, I say 'good morning' to a photo of her left in the sitting room - it might sound crazy but that is what I do.

"That is what I am left with at the minute.

"As far as functioning goes, I don't - I just get up, take the dogs for a walk, feed them and look after the bird (pet parrot).

Tina Satchwell
Tina Satchwell

"Other than that there is not much happening in my life."

Mr Satchwell again pleaded with his wife, or anyone who has information about her whereabouts, to contact gardaí.

He insisted he would welcome Tina home with "open arms."

"My message to Tina is my arms are open - nothing has changed as far as I am concerned she can just come back and we would settle straight back into life the way it was," he said.

"If there is anything there she wants to work on altering, then we will work on altering that.

"Basically, I cannot say much more - (Tina is) my life. I don't have a life since she has been gone."

Tina Satchwell from Youghal Co Cork
Tina Satchwell from Youghal Co Cork

Mr Satchwell said there was nothing out of the ordinary on March 20 2017 to indicate his wife was about to disappear.

"It was the same as any other morning - she got up and I made her a cup of tea and a slice of toast. It is something I will never forget.

"It wasn't unusual for her to turn around and ask me to go shopping.

"I thought nothing of it at the time. When I came back, the keys were on the ground. When she didn't come back I thought she was gone to Fermoy," he said.

He raised the alarm four days later when he realised, to his shock, that Tina had not gone to visit relatives in Fermoy.

Tina's relatives in Fermoy, Co Cork said they were too upset by the anniversary to comment publicly.

Tina disappeared from her Youghal home on March 20 2017 while her husband, Richard, was on an errand to Dungarvan in Waterford.

When he returned, he claimed he spotted Tina's keys lying on the floor.

Two suitcases were missing as well as items of Tina's clothing.

However, her beloved dog, Ruby, was left alone in the house.

Mr Satchwell also claimed that €26,000 in cash, saved from a property sale and the proceeds of car boot sales, was missing from the property.

No trace of Tina was found despite gardaí examining hundreds of hours of CCTV security camera footage.

Tina did not have a passport and no trace of her was found at Irish or UK ports and airports.

Mr Satchwell said he was "relieved" that the garda woodland search had not ended last week with the tragic discovery of a body - and he was still praying Tina would be found safe and well.

He has repeatedly insisted he had nothing to do with his wife's disappearance.

"I am still hoping Tina will be found safe," he said.

"If you don't have hope, you don't have anything. I will always live in hope because that is all I have."

"I am hoping that Tina is out there and she is going to get in touch. I don't want to go down the road of thinking the other way because I wouldn't be able to cope."

However, Mr Satchwell is adamant he does not believe his wife is dead and has suggested she may have had help with her disappearance.

He said a friend of Tina's now believes she is living in the UK.

The couple, who met when Tina was 17, were 26 years married last November.

Last week, gardaí called-off a 12 day search of an east Cork forest in the hunt for clues as to what happened to Tina.

Detectives are now considering new search areas after confirming the receipt of new information in the case.

A team of 60 personnel had painstakingly searched Mitchel's Wood outside Castlemartyr in east Cork since March 5 without any breakthrough in the hunt for Tina.

"A number of items recovered during the course of this search will now be examined to establish whether they are related to the disappearance of Tina," a garda spokesman said.

"Gardaí would also like to thank members of the public who have come forward with new information which will now be investigated."

Gardaí had earmarked 40 acres of the woodland as a priority search area.

Searches of Mitchel's Wood, located just off the main Cork-Waterford road, were ordered after gardaí received a telephone tip-off that "significant activity" was spotted by a member of the public around the forestry in March last year.

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