Original article from Kent Live
When Wayne Sturley heard that human bones had been found in Biggin Hill last week, his hopes were raised that he may finally have some answers surrounding his mum's disappearance.
Wayne’s mum, Linda Sturley, suddenly went missing in July 1981 and has never been found, despite extensive searches in and around Biggin Hill.
As prosecutors started to compile evidence against Graham Sturley (Wayne’s dad and Linda’s husband) the shopkeeper died from a heart attack.
With no other lines of enquiry and no confession from Graham the case became an unsolved mystery.
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That left Wayne and his sister Sharon, both toddlers at the time, without a mother or a father and an unsolved disappearance lingering over them.
The disappearance of Linda Sturley has so far brought no rewards and no answers although the hope never dies for Wayne, who is now 41 and lives in Hastings.
The bones discovered in Biggin Hill last week were just a five minute drive from where Wayne was raised and the initial reports seemed to suggest that they could belong to Linda.
However, just two days after the discovery was made public, the Met Police confirmed that the bones belonged to a male, ruling out the possibility of them being Linda Sturley.
Speaking to KentLive, Wayne Sturley said: “It was gutting when I found out the bones didn’t belong to my mum – It was so disappointing. I lived just five minutes from where they were found so it seemed to add up.
Linda met Graham after he had served a one year prison sentence for selling stolen goods and the pair settled down together in Biggin Hill.
After a somewhat up and down relationship, the pair had two children, Wayne and his older sister Sharon, who is now 44.
Wayne told KentLive: “I know that he caught her cheating and that he confronted the person. While she was pregnant she disappeared and we never heard from her.”
After his father died, Wayne hoped his mother may return, but that was not the case and they were left to move from house to house.
The pair of them initially went to stay at his father’s girlfriend's house, someone Wayne believes could have some answers surrounding the disappearance.
He said: “Me and my sister, who are still really close, are still looking for the step mum that we went to stay with because we think she must know something.
Losing both parents was the worst possible start to life for Wayne who is now making a success of life.
He added: “My childhood was all over the place. I went to stay with my dad’s girlfriend and then we went to stay with a family friend after she let go of us.
"It was always hard but it was not so much as a teenager, I was well taken care of by a lot of families to a certain extent and my friends were quite protective over me as well.”
“Growing up it was quite easy and as I’ve got older and I’ve started looking into it."
The Metropolitan Police confirmed the disappearance of Linda Sturley remains open and unsolved although there are no active lines of enquiry.
A statement said: “Detectives are urging people to come forward with any information to assist in discovering what happened to Linda after 17 July 1981 by tweeting @MetCC or calling 101. To remain anonymous, contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
With 40 years now having passed since she disappeared Wayne is losing hope that he will find his mum alive.
He said: “There’s not much hope (that she’s still alive) I just can’t see it. I’ve never really got my head around I’m always trying to find things out.
"I know they look into the case every 10 years. I don’t know how long they will be able to keep going on with it.”
“I thought she must be buried under a building or something like that. They would have found her otherwise I think.”
Sharon Sturley has appealed for anyone with any information to come forward and contact the police.