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Mum of missing chef Claudia Lawrence makes heartbreaking vow 15 years after her disappearance

Mum of missing chef Claudia Lawrence makes heartbreaking vow 15 years after her disappearance

The 35-year-old disappeared without a trace 15 years ago

15 years since university chef Claudia Lawrence disappeared, her family have issued a heartbreaking vow as police make a fresh appeal in her case.

The 35-year-old was last seen and heard from on 18 March 2009 after completing her shift at the University of York's Goodricke College's Roger Kirk Centre.

The university cook was seen by a neighbour passing by a local shop before returning home that evening, where she'd speak to her mother and father one final time via telephone.

Claudia's final text message was sent at 8.23pm. She failed to turn up to work the next day, and didn't show up to meet her friend for a pre-organised catch-up at a local pub the following evening.

On the 20 March, her family reported her missing, and though North Yorkshire Police were hesitant in launching the investigation - on the grounds that Claudia was not a vulnerable person and there was no obvious evidence of violence - officers later upgraded the enquiry from a missing person to one of suspected murder.

Since that fateful night, minimal progress has been made in finding Claudia.

Claudia disappeared 15 years ago.

Back in 2021, police searched Sand Hutton Gravel Pits, a wooded area eight miles outside York, hoping to discover something to bring her family some justice, to no avail.

"For such pain and despair to continue for 15 years without knowing where your child is, or what happened to them, well that is far beyond what any mum or dad should have to live with," Wayne Fox, the senior investigating officer, said at the time.

And this week, Claudia's mother has vowed she'll never give up hope when it comes to getting to the bottom of what happened to her daughter.

After police renewed their appeal for information today, Joan Lawrence, now 80, told press: "I will never give up looking for Claudia. I will find a way to keep going."

Claudia's father Peter died without knowing what happened to his daughter.

The missing chef's father Peter sadly died three years ago, without ever having received an explanation as to what happened to his daughter, who would have celebrated her 50th birthday last month.

"The not knowing is unbearable," Joan explained. "Every morning I wake up with a range of emotions and my heart never stops aching.

"I am constantly asking myself, where is she and what happened. It’s a nightmare. It feels like a lifetime, but even worse, a life sentence. The suffering is unbearable."

She went on: "I can’t grieve or lay flowers at Claudia’s grave because I don’t know where she is. All I want is answers."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Crime, True Crime, UK News, Parenting