'Is our sister alive or dead?' ask family of Plymouth woman missing since 1979
THE remaining family of a woman missing since 1979 have said they just want to know whether she is "alive or dead".
Thirty-four years after June Brockway went missing from the city, police have returned to the case in the hope of tracking her down.
Mrs Brockway was last seen on December 28, 1979.
The mystery of her disappearance is now said to be Devon and Cornwall Police's longest-running missing person inquiry.
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In a front page report in the Western Evening Herald on January 9, 1980, Mrs Brockway had "discharged herself prematurely from the Royal Naval Hospital, Stonehouse on Friday December 28".
According to the report she returned to her home in Saltburn Road, St Budeaux, before heading off in a taxi to the North Road area, either to find accommodation or catch a train, possibly to Bristol or Cardiff.
Pc Ian Watson, who is heading the inquiry, said he has contacted Mrs Brockway's living relatives – her older and her younger brothers.
Both have asked not to be named.
Pc Watson said: "It has been so long for them both. The older brother is in his 80s while the younger brother is in his early 70s. After all this time, they just want to know if she is alive or dead.
"I think there is a feeling there that if she had really wanted to get in touch with them, she would have by now.
"I think they just want to put it all to rest, one way or another."
The brothers have confirmed that Mrs Brockway's middle name was actually Helena, and not Ellena, as originally written in the 1979 police and newspaper reports.
In addition, Pc Watson has learned that her mother's maiden name was Bryan and it is possible that she may have tried to restart her life under an assumed name.
Mrs Brockway's own maiden name was Waterfield.
At the time she was described as being 5ft 3in tall, very thin build, pale complexion, brown eyes, dark shoulder-length hair turning grey.
On the day she disappeared she wore a light-coloured woollen hat, chocolate brown coat, brown shoes and was carrying a brown handbag and a suitcase.
She was understood to be a very well-regarded hairdresser and may have continued her work elsewhere in the country.
Pc Watson said he has attempted to contact Mrs Brockway's husband who later left the St Budeaux property without leaving a forwarding address.
Mr Brockway was said to be an ex-Royal Navy serviceman, known as Larry.
Despite the length of time that has passed, investigators are still hoping that they can trace the whereabouts of Mrs Brockway, who would now be 76 years old.
Anyone with information about June Ellena Brockway, nee Waterfield, should contact PC Ian Watson on 101 quoting reference PID5511.