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Mum's 'trauma' after man claimed to be son Ben Needham who's been missing for 32 years

Mum's 'trauma' after man claimed to be son Ben Needham who's been missing for 32 years

She's vowed to never give up the search for her son

The mother of missing Ben Needham has opened up about the ‘trauma’ she went through after a man came forward claiming to be her missing son.

Ben was just 21 months old when he vanished on the Greek island of Kos in 1991.

Ben and his family, including mum Kerry, had moved from Sheffield to Greece to start a new life and on the day he vanished his grandmother Christine had taken him to a farmhouse that his grandfather Eddie was renovating.

This week marks the 32nd anniversary of his disappearance - but Kerry says the family has never given up hope that Ben may be found alive.

Ben Needham vanished three decades ago.

In an interview with ITV yesterday (Monday 24 July), Kerry revealed that she had been contacted by a man claiming to be Ben and that after chatting for ‘weeks’ she also started to believe it could be her missing son.

She said: "He had absolutely convinced himself that he was Ben. There were a lot of things that had happened in his life to make him think he didn't belong to the parents that had brought him up. It's an ordeal.

"After speaking with the guy over a matter of weeks I started to convince myself that he was Ben and I've been through this many, many times. It's traumatic.

"You kind of try to keep an open mind, but it's so difficult when you are talking to somebody who looks very similar to Ben when he was small. It's very hard not to get involved with somebody like that.

Mum Kerry has vowed to never give up searching for her son.

"I try my best not to have personal contact with somebody, but then my guilty conscience eats away at me and I think, if he is Ben, then by me not talking to him I am rejecting him and I can't do that. But at the end of the day when it turns out not to Ben it's soul destroying."

DNA tests were carried out that proved conclusively that the man wasn’t Ben, meaning Kerry's search for the truth goes on.

She said: "Every day is a continuous fight for us, a fight to stay alive, to keep the investigation going, a fight to find the truth. In our minds, Ben is still a missing person.”

In 2016, South Yorkshire Police said they believed that Ben died on the day of his disappearance.

The force said it believed Ben had been killed in an accident with a digger that was driven by a local man.

But without physical evidence, Kerry and her family are still desperate for more information.

“Even though South Yorkshire Police came to their conclusion in 2016, we as a family have still not got any evidence to say that's what happened,” she added.

Featured Image Credit: ITV News/Family Handout

Topics: Crime, UK News