Today Kate and I did a series of TV interviews for Portuguese and foreign TV. It has always been very important to us that we speak to the Portuguese people directly since we are in their country and have received such tremendous support, particularly from the local community. We again talked about the YouTube channel Don’t You Forget Me which was launched yesterday. Naturally we were also asked about the events of this week, which has been incredibly difficult for us with wild speculation in the media. We have always been told that the police had an open mind about Madeleines abduction and that all scenarios were possible.
In the first few days after Madeleines disappearance it was so difficult for us not to imagine the worst case scenario: that she had been taken and murdered, particularly in light of the statistics on child abduction. However as the massive investigation and extensive search did not find any evidence of serious harm to Madeleine, we started to hope that she would be found alive. This belief has been encouraged by the police and reinforced by the experts at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children on my recent visit to Washington. There have been a number of children recovered, even after years of abduction, and whom the authorities had thought must be dead.
Everything we have done in the last 99 days in the campaign to help find Madeleine has been driven by fact that all our family and friends feel that there is a reasonable chance Madeleine is still alive. Kate and I, like all parents of missing children will always have that hope unless we see concrete evidence to the contrary. It is this hope that has sustained us along with the overwhelming support we have received from family, friends and well-wishers. As parents, we have always said we need to know what has happened to our daughter who has been such a massive part of our life. If the current police activity does uncover new evidence that Madeleine has been seriously harmed we should be the first to know.
We have always felt that the best chance of finding Madeleine is through the police investigation. We have done our best to get relevant information in to the enquiry, particularly from tourists who were in the Algarve around the time of her abduction. The fact that Madeleine could have been moved out of Portugal easily in the first few hours has been the reason the campaign has had to have an international dimension. One in six missing children in North America are found as a direct result of high awareness through distribution of posters and media exposure.
Tonight we attended the weekly vigil to pray for Madeleine and other missing children. These services have a calm serenity, which allow us to contemplate quietly. There was also a vigil in Rothley attended by family and friends. Tomorrow we will be marking the 100 day very quietly with a prayer service in Praia da Luz. Other family will be at the world pipe band chamionships in Glasgow and on the streets in Liverpool. A number of sporting events will also be marking the day.