I cried when I saw my sister on poster | #missingkids


THE family of missing woman Sandra Collins have launched a new campaign to bring her home.

The Irish Sun on Sunday today reveals how huge billboards with the message ‘Can You Help Bring Sandra Home’ have been erected in of Ballina and Castlebar in Co Mayo.

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Sandra Collins’ brother Patrick beside one of the new billboardsCredit: Paul Mealey – The Sun Dublin
She disappeared in 2000 when she was just 286

She disappeared in 2000 when she was just 28
Sandra's family have launched a new campaign

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Sandra’s family have launched a new campaign

It is part of her determined family’s latest campaign to end their long search for the murdered mum who vanished in 2000.

And alongside the billboards, posters will also be placed at bus stops in the two towns.

The posters – featuring a striking image of Sandra as a child – also have the message: ‘It’s Never Too Late To Come Forward – Your Information Could Be Key’.

The new publicity campaign comes as a new documentary – entitled Maru Inar Measc: Dunmharu Sandra Collins’ – on the mum’s murder will be screened on TG4 this coming Wednesday.

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Sandra’s heartbroken family were able to pay for the advertising campaign thanks to generous donations from the public as part of a GoFundMe initiative.

The adverts were unveiled for the first time last Thursday.

Speaking to The Irish Sun on Sunday after seeing the striking billboards for the first time, Sandra’s brother Patrick says he hopes the new campaign will encourage people to come forward.

Patrick said: “When I saw my sister looking down on me I cried the whole way home.

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“Sandra was such a private person and she would be embarrassed at having her face on a billboard — but it’s what we have to do.

“These are the lengths we have to go to because there are people who know where she is and they have chosen to remain silent all these years.

“Hopefully, the billboards and posters can remind those people with information that it’s never too late to come forward.

“It should also remind those with information on the whereabouts of my sister that we are never going to give up looking for her.”

‘VERY POWERFUL’

Patrick added: “I also think the bus stop images are also very powerful because people get to see Sandra as a child.

“The photo of Sandra should remind those with information about what happened to this beautiful young girl when she was older.

“The new posters shocked me when I first saw them and I can only imagine how it must resonate on those with the information that can put an end to all of this.

“We are going to keep going until we find her and I’m sure those people who know where she is won’t want to be reminded of her every year.

“This isn’t about justice or revenge – it’s simply about giving our sister the Christian burial she deserves.”

ANONYMOUS CALLER PLEA

As part of the family’s latest quest for answers, they have also pleaded with the person who made an anonymous call after Christmas to come forward again.

Patrick added: “I received a call from someone who said they had information about Sandra but then they hung up.

“They didn’t elaborate on their information and I would plead with them to please contact me again.

“I will go anywhere and in the dead of night if I have to if someone will tell me where my sister is.

“I would also have no problem in meeting Sandra’s killer and if they told me where she was I would shake their hand and thank them.

“I’ve no doubt that there are people out there who know what happened and we’re just asking them to have the courage to finally do the right thing.”

ONGOING INVESTIGATION

At present, the investigation into Sandra’s disappearance is classed as an “active and ongoing” inquiry.

The latest case conference on the probe was held last week.

Investigators believe Sandra, who was 28 and pregnant at the time of her disappearance, was abducted from Killala pier in Co Mayo on December 4, 2000, and later buried in a shallow grave.

Detectives also believe her killer may have shared their evil secret with others who have maintained a wall of silence for over two decades.

But the Irish Sun on Sunday also understands a female associate of the chief suspect has recently distanced herself from him.

CHIEF SUSPECT

We previously revealed how the chief suspect previously came close to speaking to gardai but changed his mind at the last minute.

As part of their recent efforts to raise awareness of the case, the Gardai held checkpoints in Killala.

And cops haven’t ruled out conducting further checkpoints as they attempt to gather fresh information.

Officers could also re-interview witnesses as they continue with their investigation.

The case is now being run by Supt Gary Walsh, Insp Dermot Butler and Senior Investigating Officer John Costello at Ballina Garda station.

‘UNDER ACTIVE INVESTIGATION’

Supt Walsh said: “This case is under active investigation. I would urge anyone with the slightest bit of information to come forward.

“Every piece of information we receive will be followed through to conclusion.

“An incident room for this case is being managed by a senior investigating officer and any information we receive will be treated in the strictest confidence.”

And a senior garda, who reclassified Sandra’s case from a missing person probe to a major murder investigation, has also urged anyone with information to come forward.

Former Det Supt Peter O’Boyle reclassified the case after gardai established there had been “no proof of life” following Sandra’s disappearance.

Mr O’Boyle added: “Now is the time for her to come home. Twenty-two years is far too long for any family to wait to give their loved one a Christian burial.

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“The answer to this terrible crime lies in the Killala are and there are people with information who have yet to come forward.

“All they have to do is make an anonymous call and tell the gardai where she is.”

Bridie and Patrick Collins, siblings of missing Sandra Collins

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Bridie and Patrick Collins, siblings of missing Sandra CollinsCredit: Crispin Rodwell – The Sun Dublin
Sandra, Bridie and James Collins pictured as children

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Sandra, Bridie and James Collins pictured as childrenCredit: Collect
Sandra, right wearing the white coat, is missed by her family

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Sandra, right wearing the white coat, is missed by her family



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