02 February 2006

Heartbroken family in web bid to find missing Martin

Belfast Telegraph

By Debra Douglas
02 February 2006

The heartbroken family and friends of missing Co Down man Martin Kelly are set to launch a website today in an attempt to gain vital clues about his disappearance.

Martin (21), from Holywood, went missing after a night out with friends at Pat's Bar in Garmoyle Street in the docks area of Belfast on New Year's Day.

Today, his distraught family and friends will be outside Belfast City Hall handing out leaflets and posters containing the new website address in the hope it will jog someone's memory.

Friend Joe McCormick said that although the website is simple at this stage, it will be elaborated on depending on how long the situation continues.

After Martin's disappearance, his family criticised the police for not doing enough to find him but yesterday, they met with Assistant Chief Constable Duncan McCausland to discuss the situation.

North Down MP Lady Hermon joined the family for the meeting.

Speaking before it took place, the Ulster Unionist MP said: "Even though Martin Kelly went missing a month ago, no explanation for his disappearance has yet emerged.

"The terrible distress experienced by his family has, I think, been exacerbated by the perception that the police have not treated his disappearance seriously enough or fully investigated the matter.

"On Monday, I raised the family's concerns directly with ACC Duncan McCausland. With a very frank exchange of views, I was certainly much more reassured about the seriousness with which the police are conducting their search for my 21-year-old constituent."

She said she was confident yesterday's meeting would be helpful for the family.

She added: "This will enable the police to explain in considerable detail their strategy for future searches and inquiries to bring Martin back to his family."

Today's launch is the third event that has been organised following Martin's disappearance and is part of an ongoing leaflet and poster campaign.

Leaflets have been distributed outside the City Hall and the Odyssey Arena and last Sunday, family and friends released 100 yellow balloons as a symbolic gesture of hope before taking part in a search of the Docklands and surrounding areas. Many also made a symbolic walk from Pat's Bar to Holywood.

The web address is:

www.ourmartykelly.com.


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