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 Thursday, 16 January, 2003, 03:56 GMT
BBC helps solve body mystery
Deborah Gray
Mr Gray's daughter recognised details of the case
A lengthy effort to identify a man whose body was found on Skye ended when his daughter saw details of a last-ditch police appeal on the BBC's Ceefax service.

Police on the Isle of Skye had almost given up hope of identifying Christopher Gray, from Crowborough, in East Sussex, and made a final plea ahead of plans to bury him on Friday.

However, his estranged daughter Deborah, 26, saw details of the police appeal on Ceefax and contacted Northern Constabulary, bringing a 15-month mystery to an end.

She said: "It was last Wednesday when I came home from work and was looking through Ceefax and read the last appeal put out by police.

We are very pleased that he has been identified and will be reunited with his family before long

Sandy Gray, Northern Constabulary
"I thought the date and location was similar to the details of my father's disappearance so I called the police in Skye.

"He was reported missing in August 2001 and was last traced to Skye, but then there is no track of his whereabouts.

"The appeal about the unidentified body said the body was of a middle aged man and that he was found in October 2001, which tied in."

Miss Gray, a speech therapist from Hadlow, in Kent, said she had not seen her father for a number of years following his divorce from her mother.

She said: "We simply lost touch. I saw him last when I was at university. Then I spent two years in Genoa and never heard from him."

Police car
A last-ditch appeal was made for information
Mr Gray's body was discovered in a makeshift shelter near Sleat in October 2001 and police efforts to identify him included an artist's impression.

Miss Gray said: "At the moment I just feel strange. It is strange not to have contact for five or six years and then the next picture I see of him is an artist's impression. Everything is happening so very quickly."

It was revealed that Mr Gray, who also has a son, was an insurance underwriter who provided personal accident cover for rugby teams.

Post mortem

Before disappearing he resigned from his job, sending a letter to his boss from a London railway station and enclosing his company car keys and mobile phone.

When Miss Gray came forward, dental records faxed to the Highlands revealed his identity.

A post mortem gave no indication of the cause of death.

Inspector Sandy Gray said: ""We are very pleased that he has been identified and will be reunited with his family before long.

"The funeral at Killbeg on Skye has been cancelled, but of course the family may wish to still have him buried there at a later date.

"We have achieved all that we set out to achieve, but even now I don't think we will ever find all the pieces to the jigsaw of what happened to this man and what led to his death. I must thank the media for helping us crack this puzzling case."

  WATCH/LISTEN
  ON THIS STORY
  The BBC's Jamie McIvor
"Miss Gray is travelling to Skye"
See also:

13 Jan 03 | Scotland
09 Jan 03 | Scotland
08 Jan 03 | Scotland
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