The heartache of not knowing, a year on
One year ago today Rudy Smith was seen walking in the Deepdale area of Pembroke. He has not been seen or heard from since.
Shortly after his disappearance the motorcycle he was last seen riding was found in waters off North Shore near Grace Church in Pembroke.
Despite desperate appeals by family members for information to bring them some closure, nothing but rumours ever surfaced on the whereabouts of 41-year-old Mr Smith.
His mother Madeline Rampersad knows deep down inside that her son is no longer among the living. But unlike murder victims who were shot and killed, she said: “My family never got to bury our loved one.
“I have nothing, no body, no burial, no grave to visit, nothing. My spirits are down today and I know tomorrow it’ll probably be worse,” said Ms Rampersad.
“Tomorrow’s the anniversary of the day Rudy disappeared. His family has had to live with this for one year with no closure, and no word on what really happened to my son.
“It’s left me with an empty feeling inside knowing that we don’t have anything to go on. It’s taken a big toll on my mother as well,” she added.
Virginia Smith, 86, is Rudy’s grandmother. The two of them were very close. Ms Smith said last night: “Every time another Monday rolls around my mind goes straight to Rudy.”
One month after his disappearance police announced the case was being treated as a murder investigation.
Senior Investigating Officer David Greenidge said in January that a number of people had come forward and provided police with information. But he said all leads and “investigative avenues” were exhausted.
He appealed for public assistance to “give some aspect of closure” to the victim’s family.
Chief Inspector Nick Pedro also appealed to the public for assistance, particularly on behalf of Mr Smith’s mother.
“I am asking each and every member of the public to put themselves in her unimaginable position. There are people in the community who know what has happened, and there are people in the community who can bring his killer or killers to justice.”
The victim’s family has made several appeals to the public for information during the past year, literally begging for closure.
Asked if she had heard the rumours surrounding her son’s disappearance she replied: “Yes, I’ve heard it all from various people but I wish someone would just go to the police and tell them what they know,” said Ms Rampersad.
“Everyday I walk to that gate hoping I would see Rudy again, but in my heart I know I won’t. I’ve heard the rumours that his body was dumped at sea and that he was taken offshore by someone on a jet ski.
“What the public needs to do is help the police, it makes me want to scream because I wonder how people could be so cruel by saying nothing. It shows me that people’s hearts have turned cold.
“Now it’s been a year that he’s been gone and the hole in my heart is still just as deep and empty. I’m begging again for someone, anyone to say something please.”
Anyone with information about Mr Smith is asked to contact the Serious Crime Unit at 247-1185 or the independent Crimestoppers hotline at 800-8477.