With plans for a few days off and a nice weekend in west Wales with Sean being attested as a Special Constable on Sunday, I was quite looking forward. I was tired after a long week, so decided to get some much needed rest on Wednesday night and head up to Aberystwyth on Thursday.

The plan was going well until around 1100 on Thursday when the pager went off. After some quick soul searching I jumped in the car and headed up to base where I joined the first response Land Rover as we headed over to Brynaman. There was a missing gentleman, but not long after arriving, we got stood down. Back home I went to finish loading the car and shortly after wards I was well on my way up to Aberystwyth. After a nice night of just mooching around the seafront, Sean and I headed to Carmarthen on Friday for his Police training. After dropping him off at Dyfed Powys HQ, I drove to Dad’s in Pontyberem where I was intending to relax and spend some time sorting out my Grandmother’s bathroom.

As soon as I sat down with a sandwich, the pager went off. “Bugger.” I thought. I quickly decided that unless it was nearby, I’d stay where I was – I’d already spent a lot of money on petrol this month. I checked the voicebank once the ‘999’ had come through – the callout was in Ammanford. “Oh, hell,” I thought, “that’s just up the road.” So off I went, giving Sean a quick call on the handsfree on the way. He already knew about this search – one of his instructors was on the way there.

By the time I’d got to Ammanford police station, the RV had moved to Tycroes. Things were already kicking off when I arrived and we rapidly started deploying for a search – there was serious concern for this missing young woman who’d last been seen on Thursday morning. We got ourselves sorted and headed off as quick as possible to catch the last of the evening light. 3 hours, 9 fields, 2 ramshackle sheds, 1 lorry park and countless boggy bits later, we were back at control, waiting for our next tasking. It wasn’t until the following morning the BBC started covering the story, but at this point, this was a fairly major incident. Three mountain rescue teams, several dog teams, a police helicopter and plenty of police officers were all out searching for her as concern mounted and those of us involved feared the worst. Friday night I had a new kind of search – back gardens. This time, we had a PCSO with us who would handily have a chat with the residents first. If they weren’t in, he’d be present to ensure that if there were any problems, there was a police presence there to straighten things out.

After getting home around 0100 and having a quick sleep, I was out again on Saturday morning at 0900. The rest of the day was spent searching and this time we covered some big areas and re-covered some areas that we’d done the night before – a daylight search is very different to a nighttime search. We covered some 38 seperate search areas, stretching from where her car had been left down towards Ammanford, covering about 4 square km. We had a few moments of interest – especially with dogs picking up on other search teams and searching the garage where she left her car, but we were still coming up with no clues as to what happened here. By about 1700 I was tired and had planned to go for food with Sean, so I headed home.

The search continued without me on Sunday morning and at around 1120, the pager went off – stand down. As the BBC says, a body was found which, although it seems is still unconfirmed at the moment, was thought to be the missing woman. A very sad and unfortunate end to a search.

Update: Looks like our worst fears were realised and the police have opened a murder inquiry. Our thoughts are with the family at this time.

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