Madeleine McCann, three, went missing from an apartment in a Portuguese holiday resort 99 days ago. Her mother Kate McCann tells Steve Boggan why she and her husband Gerry remain optimistic. (5min 06s)
August 10, 2007 1:57 PM
SB: Tomorrow, Madeleine Mccann will have been missing for 100 days. The 3-year old went missing from a holiday apartment in the Portuguese resort of PdL as her parents, Kate and Gerry, dined with friends nearby. Kate McCann told the Guardian’s Steve Boggan about the moment she returned to the flat and discovered that Madeleine wasn’t there.
KMcC: We were checking on the children several times an hour and erm ... I’d gone back to check them and it, you know, was erm quiet and erm .... I went into the room and er......... Madeleine wasn’t there......erm ...... you know .... and I just thought,,, can (inaudible) look and thinking she must be, she must be in her bed and er there was that horrible... panic and fear and erm... there are other things that I can’t..... describe to you because it’s part of the investigation but erm... I mean there was not , there was no shadow of doubt that Madeleine had been taken to me and that’s why the panic and the fear was so immediate and real and erm... it was awful, you know, and erm.... you know, I guess I felt I’d let her down, desperately sorry really erm ... that we weren’t there the minute she was taken...... you know and we from a kind of er.. panic and fear to that total feeling of helplessness .... and not knowing what to do... and erm ... it was just awful really.
SB: This week the Portuguese police were examining spots of blood in the apartment, but the McCanns remain optimistic
KMcC: Imean, in the first few days we erm thought that was the worst and it was just awful, I mean it was just the worst experience that I’ve ever...... erm .....now I guess (noise) you see I mean we’ve got more hope now than we did in those first few days and erm... don’t get me wrong, we’re not blinkered and er...... obviously we still have those dark thoughts but they’re not helpful, you know, they’re not helping us and they’re not helping Madeleine.... and sometimes you’ve just got to blank them out. I guess, if we’re honest, ...... you know if Madeleine wasn’t alive now then we’d rather know now....... but then, you know, .....we don’t know that, you know and we’re very .... hopeful, in fact we’re probably, as I say, more hopeful than we were at the beginning. And what we don’t want to do is look back and regret not having done absolutely everything we can.
SB: Some people in PdL want the McCanns to leave. They say their continued presence there is bad for the town’s image, but Kate McCann told the Guardian, they’re staying put.
KMcC: ...(I mean) er it’s a difficult one and I think you’ll just know when the time’s right and it’s not right for me at the moment, erm.... I do feel closer to Madeleine here, close to the investigation. We don’t know where Madeleine is, you know, and there’s no reason to say that she’s close to here than she is to the UK but she’s (inaud).. it’s just a feeling I have at the moment. There are day’s when you think to yourself, how can I manage and to function. ....and’ here people from outside looking in, cos I know I’ve done it myself in the past when there’s been sort of similar cases or things that happen to children, you think how does anybody cope with that. And you can’t understand how anyone can function, certainly like the first 4 days we didn’t, you know.... didn’t eat, didn’t sleep and er you know ... your body comes back to normal a little bit..... you have to, you have to keep going, so, ...... I mean, er , as soon as I wake up I’m aware Madeleine isn’t there, you know, and I usually and know I say a very quick prayer to meself before I get up and ... obviously we’ve got Sean and Amelie so erm.. they get up fairly early and it’s a case you’ve got to make things as normal as possible for them, you know, and they need love and protecting parents as well.
SB: Relations between the McCanns and the Portuguese media have deteriorated in recent days, with hostile lines of speculation about the couple.
KMcC: I mean, criticism’s very hard, you know and er you know it’s very hurtful. It’s totally unhelpful. Erm ....... oh it’s, you know, considering what we’re going through already and how awful it is... it does seem very cruel but, I mean, when I’m kind of thinking logically, I think you know I know that this is a small group of people, you know. Huge majority of the public are behind us and they’ve been fantastic and.....I’m so so grateful for everyone that’s come up and wished us well. You know, I’ve had thousands of letters from other mums and stuff and er every line of every letter they’ve written has helped us, it’s helped us get through another day. You know you’ve got to remember who’s committing the crime here, it’s er it’s that person that was watching us and broke in and took Madeleine out of the bed.
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