THE parents of a man who has been missing for more than three weeks have opened their hearts for the first time.
Julie and John Fletcher say they are thinking of their son Scott every minute of the day since he disappeared on Wednesday, May 11.
The tormented couple, from the Throston area of Hartlepool, are growing more concerned by the day as they have not heard from Scott since he is believed to have got into a car on the A181 near Wheatley Hill.
His parents joined in a Cleveland Police and Cumbria Constabulary search at the popular Appleby Fair to try to find their 27-year-old son on Thursday, but it proved fruitless.
Julie said: “We are very stressed, we go to sleep thinking about him and wake up in the early hours thinking about him.
“He wouldn’t have to come back, we just want to know he is safe – that would be enough.
“Scott, please just let us know you’re safe so we can all settle.”
Julie said she and John cancelled a week’s holiday to Turkey last week and “couldn’t possibly go not knowing where he is”.
The last confirmed sighting of Scott was at around 8.20pm on May 11 in a layby opposite the Jet garage on the A181 at Wheatley Hill.
Reports suggest he could have got into a black or dark coloured Renault Clio on a 54 registration plate being driven by a blonde-haired woman.
Julie said he did not take any belongings with him.
Police have also received an unconfirmed sighting of him in a silver 4x4 car in the Victoria Road and Avenue Road areas of the town at around 12.50pm on Tuesday, May 31.
Julie and John, 64, spent an afternoon at the horse fair, which is a popular destination for the gypsy and traveller community, where Scott has friends.
“We looked about, but there were no sightings or anything,” said Julie.
“But we just couldn’t sit still and do nothing. It’s so frustrating and extremely worrying.”
Julie added that Scott usually speaks to his daughter, Lucie, four, at least three times a day and he also has a step-son called Bradley, seven.
She said: “When Lucie came over the other day, the first thing she said was ‘where’s my dad?’”
Julie added that the last time she saw Scott, who bought and sold cars and worked in property maintenance, on the morning of May 11, he seemed fine.
Scott, who has two sisters called Louise Burns, 39, and Melanie Evans, 43, was living with his parents, but was in the process of moving house.
Julie said: “Our first thought was that something had happened to him, but as time goes on nothing has come back to us to say that it has.”
Officers are currently studying security camera footage into the reported sighting of Scott in a 4x4 car and are appealing to people in the area at the time.
Acting Detective Inspector Alan Todd, of Hartlepool CID, said: “I would like to thank the member of the public for coming forward. We can’t confirm that this man was Scott, but would ask people who were in the area at the time to think again whether they think they may have seen him.
“I would also like to appeal to Scott directly to get in touch with his family who are all extremely concerned.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact Act Det Insp Todd, of Hartlepool Police, on (01642) 302178.