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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 September 2007, 11:35 GMT 12:35 UK
Dead girl's mother 'found dead'
Joanne Coombs
Mrs Coombs said her house was empty without her daughter
The mother of a teenager who died on tracks near a railway station in Essex five weeks ago has been found dead on the same stretch, it is reported.

Joanne Coombs, 40, was reportedly found dead at Manningtree, Essex, on Tuesday.

Her 17-year-old daughter Natasha was found dead near the same spot on 10 August. Police were at the Coombs' Harwich home on Tuesday night.

Insp Ed Purchase of British Transport Police said a train driver found a body after a track fault was reported.

"On Tuesday evening the driver of the 1900 BST Liverpool Street to Norwich train service reported a possible track fault," Mr Purchase said.

"The line was checked by the driver of the following freight train. He found the body of a woman near Manningtree station.

"We can confirm that this is the same location where the body of 17-year-old Natasha Coombs was found on 10 August.

"It is believed that the woman was struck and killed by the train reporting the track fault. The incident is not being treated as suspicious.

"The deceased has not yet being formally identified and an investigation is under way by British Transport Police."

Meal with friends

A post-mortem examination showed Natasha died when she was hit by a train.

She was last seen alive while travelling home to Harwich following a meal with friends in Ipswich on 27 July.

Natasha had separated from her boyfriend two weeks before and police believed she might have been upset about the split on the night she disappeared.

Natasha Coombs
Natasha's body was found in undergrowth near the station

Her body was found two weeks later in undergrowth a mile down the line from the station on the London side after a report from a passing train driver.

A coroner has launched an investigation into her death.

Mrs Coombs appeared at a press conference on 2 August with her husband Gary, 48, to appeal for help in finding Natasha.

She broke down as the couple discussed Natasha's disappearance.

"The house is so empty without her," Mrs Coombs said. "It's unbearable."

She said the family had been due to go on holiday to Canada on 4 August and added that Natasha had been excited by the prospect of the trip.

Mrs Coombs said her daughter had also been looking forward to turning 18 later in the year.

'Constant fear'

Natasha was Mr and Mrs Coombs' only child.

Mrs Coombs told of her last conversation with Natasha when the teenager had called on the night she vanished to say she would get a taxi home from the station.

In the days following Natasha's disappearance, her grandparents, Peter and Wendy Clackett, also made an appeal for help to find her and offered a reward to anyone who had information.

On 8 August Mr and Mrs Coombs made a second appeal for help in finding Natasha and said they lived in constant fear of "what tomorrow will bring".

Train death girl is laid to rest
21 Aug 07 |  England
Railway body formally identified
13 Aug 07 |  England
Parents' plea over missing girl
08 Aug 07 |  England

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