Monday

Kate and Gerry McCann once again thrust twins into media spotlight despite begging journalists to protect their privacy


Kate pain as twins join Maddie school

KATE McCann will this week watch twins Sean and Amelie start at the "big" school where missing sister Madeleine should already be a pupil.

The kiddies, now four, are said to be "very excited" about their first day in primary class.

But the moment she takes them through the front gates will be tinged with unbearable sadness for Kate.

For Maddie was due to start there four months after she vanished on a Portuguese holiday just days before her fourth birthday in May, 2007.

School chiefs kept an empty desk, coat peg and locker for her that year - and still keep a candle burning in the hope she will one day be returned.

GP Kate, 41, is expected to drop off Sean and Amelie with husband Gerry, also 41, if he can get time off from his job as a cardiac specialist.

Amelie will be wearing the same uniform - a red gingham dress - her sister should have worn for her first day at Bishop Ellis Roman Catholic Primary in Thurmaston, Leics.

A source close to the McCanns said: "For any family, children starting at big school is a momentous occasion - but for Kate and Gerry it will also be an emotional one too, with Madeleine never far from their thoughts."

A family pal said: "Kate and Gerry are really excited about the twins starting school. But it's yet another milestone without their beloved daughter.

"They miss her as much as ever and it will feel strange that the twins are going to the school Madeleine sadly has never had the chance to start."

The twins will be driven the five miles to school from their family home in Rothley.

Kate's uncle Brian Kennedy is a school governor and his wife Janet was a teacher there.


Brian and Janet Kennedy

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Source: The Sun