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Family of missing Leah Croucher, 19, hold hand of her dying brother

The family of missing Leah Croucher have revealed a heartbreaking photo of them holding the hand of her brother in hospital before he died over the weekend.

Haydon, 24, of Milton Keynes, died suddenly with his family around his bedside in hospital, including his other sister Jade and parents John and Claire Croucher.

Leah, who was 19 when she disappeared, has not been seen since February after she vanished on her way to work in the Buckinghamshire town.

Haydon's sister Leah, with whom he was very close, has not been seen since February this year

Haydon’s sister Leah, with whom he was very close, has not been seen since February this year

Jade Croucher posted the photograph on Facebook of Haydon’s hand in hospital with his identity tag around his wrist, being held by three other hands.

She wrote: ‘Haydon, Me Mum and Dad held onto your hand until the very last moment but we will hold you in our hearts forever!

‘You will always be with us until the day we meet you again. Mum and Dad might not be together but one thing that will never waver is the love they have for you their darling son!

‘We will all stick together as a unit and get through the pain with the love and support of both of our amazing stepparents Dave and Claire.’ 

Haydon (left) and Leah Croucher (right) with their father John in their Taekwondo attire

Haydon (left) and Leah Croucher (right) with their father John in their Taekwondo attire

Leah Croucher's family face new heartbreak after her 24 year old brother Haydon was found dead (pictured together)

Leah Croucher’s family face new heartbreak after her 24 year old brother Haydon was found dead (pictured together)

Police investigating the disappearance of Leah have knocked on more than 4,000 doors, searched lakes near her home and offered a reward of £5,000 for information about her whereabouts, but so far detectives have drawn a blank.

Haydon had been involved in the search for his younger sister and in May appeared at Aylesbury crown court accused of threatening a man who had dated the 19-year-old

Haydon had been involved in the search for his younger sister and in May appeared at Aylesbury crown court accused of threatening a man who had dated the 19-year-old

Announcing his son’s death on Facebook yesterday, John Croucher, 44, said: ‘Our world could not be more broken than it is now.’

He described his son as ‘kind, generous, funny, witty and loving person’.

Mr Croucher told how he had spoken to Haydon on Thursday evening ‘to reassure him that we all feel the same sadness’ as the nine-month anniversary of Leah’s disappearance approached on Friday.

He said they had promised to meet up the following day to ‘face it together’ but hours later there was a knock at the door from police telling him Haydon was ‘fighting for his life’.

Mr Croucher wrote: ‘The doctors say the prognosis is bad. You sit by his bedside and watch him deteriorate by the minute. You have to say your goodbyes.

‘What do you say in that situation? You tell him you love him. You reminisce about funnier times. You beg him to come back to us.

‘Finally you have to tell him to go and be at peace. You hold him as he slips away. To say our hearts and minds are broken is an understatement.’ 

Leah Croucher, 19, was last seen in Furzton, Milton Keynes just after 8.15am on February 15

Police have been combing CCTV evidence in a bid to locate Croucher

Leah Croucher, 19, was last seen in Furzton, Milton Keynes just after 8.15am on February 15 (right). Her family last saw her at around 10pm the evening before

Miss Croucher's parents John and Claire Croucher held an emotional press conference in February appealing for information. John has now confirmed their son's death

Miss Croucher’s parents John and Claire Croucher held an emotional press conference in February appealing for information. John has now confirmed their son’s death

Haydon was close to his sister and had been involved in the searches for her.

Haydon's sister Leah, with whom he was very close, has not been seen since February this year

Haydon’s sister Leah, with whom he was very close, has not been seen since February this year

In May he appeared in court accused of threatening a man who had been in a relationship with his sister.

Haydon accepted a restraining order from Judge Francis Sheridan and the prosecution was dropped.

At the time the judge told him: ‘This is a real tragedy. You and your family are entitled to and deserve our utter sympathy.’

Mr Croucher added: ‘Haydon was a kind, generous, funny, witty and loving person and in his words an amazingly good looking bloke. He had a huge heart.

‘He was only 24. Too young to be gone forever. He has left behind two families and friends that loved him dearly. We will all miss him. Always.

‘Be at peace Haydon. If Leah is up there with you look after each other as always, until we get there. We love and miss you both terribly.’

His cause of death was not known last night. It is understood police are investigating and a post-mortem will be held in due course.

Last month, Leah’s mother revealed her daughter was having an affair with a man engaged to be married before she disappeared.

Claire, 44, said she believes Leah – who would now be 20 – may have tried to keep secret the relationship with the man who was 27.

On Valentine’s Day, the evening before she went missing, Leah went out for more than an hour but police have not been able to find out where she went.

That evening was last time Mr and Mrs Croucher saw Leah.

She was caught on CCTV at 8.15am the next day walking to her job as a financial clerk in Knowlhill, around two miles from her home in Emerson Valley, Milton Keynes, but she never arrived.

Three witnesses saw a girl ‘upset and crying’. Since then her phone has been off and her bank account untouched.

Mrs Croucher said the family believe Leah has run away with someone she knew and has either chosen not to return or is being held against her will. Their other fear is that she was snatched off the street and is no longer alive. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk



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