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Family pleads for help

MARYKE PENMAN
Last updated 15:33 30/11/2012
Arthur Eddie Cooper
MISSING MAN: Arthur Eddie Cooper.

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The family of missing Birkdale man Arthur Eddie Cooper, 62, say they have days going through every possible scenario, but remain baffled as to why he could have vanished.

Police have so far found no sign of Mr Cooper since he disappeared from his Birkdale home about 1.30pm on Thursday, November 22.

His wife Sharon Cooper says she was at home with her sister-in-law when they noticed he did not return after going to retrieve something from his car.

"I was talking to him just before he went outside to his car and he was saying something about looking for a plug for his waterblaster.

"A little while later I thought he had been gone for a long time so I started looking for him. I noticed his keys and shoes still inside but he had just vanished," Mrs Cooper says.

Mr Cooper's wallet and phone remain at the home and his family says they do not believe he has anything with him aside from the clothes on his back.

They have now made a desperate plea for anyone with information to come forward.

"Someone, somewhere must have seen something. If everybody thinks, ‘what was I doing at that time, did I notice anything?' maybe we might get somewhere," daughter Kylie Tracey says.

"It is not like him to just go walkabout. He never walks anywhere, not even down to the dairy."

Close friends have joined the family in searching all over the North Shore, including the Birkdale mud flats.

And the police Eagle helicopter has combed the area almost every day since he went missing.

"He had a routine, he didn't like doing anything away from that. That's why we are all in shock as to where he could've gone," Mrs Tracey says.

Police were alerted to a sighting near the Shepherd's Park area in Beach Haven on November 23 and found a red sleeping bag and tarpaulin in the same area on November 28 but have not confirmed they belong to Mr Cooper.

"We just want people to keep their eyes open," son Cory Jull says.

Police say there is no evidence to suggest foul play.

"He's a very approachable person. He is the type of person never to raise his voice or get angry," Mr Jull says.

"He's a pretty calm kind of guy but if someone was in trouble he'd step in to help out."

Search teams will continue to comb the Birkdale area.

He is described as European, of thin build, 178cm tall, with short grey hair and a ginger goatee beard.

At the time of his disappearance he was wearing a navy blue button-up collared shirt with short sleeves, blue jeans, a faded blue sun hat and sneakers. He may also have a black sweatshirt.

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Anyone with information or who has seen Mr Cooper is urged to contact North Shore Police on 477 5000 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

- North Shore Times

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