'I'll miss you forever': Tributes pour in after four bodies found in search for missing boys in Wales

21 November 2023, 16:31 | Updated: 21 November 2023, 21:19

Police have found four bodies in the hunt for the four missing boys
Police have found four bodies in the hunt for the four missing boys. Picture: North Wales Police

By Kit Heren

Four bodies have been recovered from a car in the search for the teenage boys who went missing in North Wales, police have said.

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Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Henderson and Hugo Morris went missing on Sunday.

Their Ford Fiesta left the A4085 in an area between Beddgelert and Llanfrothen, near Garreg, Gwynedd in north-west Wales. The boys' bodies were found inside the car.

Police said on Tuesday afternoon that the deaths appear to be "a tragic accident" but that they don't know yet why the car left the road.

The car was found "partially submerged in water", police added, after a member of public alerted them to the vehicle.

Tributes came in from the boys' families and friends after the tragic news emerged.

Wilf's girlfriend Maddi said on Instagram: "I love you so much baby,' Wilf's girlfriend Maddi said in a tribute on Instagram today. 'I'm going to miss you forever.

She told of how her boyfriend was the "sweetest and most loving boy I've ever known". She added: "I hope you know how much I love you gorgeous."

Maddi's mother Lisa added: "Wilf was such a lovely kind lad and treated Maddi in a way only a mother could hope her daughter b treated," she said.

Lisa said: "We will all miss u dearly Wilf. thank u 4 bringing so much love and happiness in2 Maddi's life and I promise to look after her 4 u."

Read more: Four teenagers missing after going camping in north Wales - live updates

The scene in Gwynedd, North Wales, where police officers were searching Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Henderson and Hugo Morris
The scene in Gwynedd, North Wales, where police officers were searching Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Henderson and Hugo Morris. Picture: Alamy

No formal identification has taken place yet, but the families of the four boys have been informed.

One of the boys was 16, two were 17 and the fourth was 18 years old.

Superintendent Owain Llewellyn added: "Our thoughts are with the family and friends of the four young men at this very difficult time. 

"This has been an extensive search involving a number of different agencies and volunteers, and this is sadly not the outcome that any of us would have wanted. 

"We would ask that the family be afforded the appropriate privacy and respect."

Officers had said earlier on Tuesday afternoon that they had found the boys' car.

Police said that investigations are ongoing to establish the circumstances in which the car would have left the road.

The four teenagers, who are sixth form students, were last seen getting into a silver Ford Fiesta car on Sunday morning. They are thought to have travelled to the area on Saturday.

A church in Shrewsbury said it would be offering "time and space" to pray for the four boys. "Our thoughts and prayers are with their families, friends, and the wider community at such a sad time," Trinity Churches Shrewsbury said.

A police cordon had been set up near the village of Garreg after police confirmed they had found the car.

Garreg is about three miles from Penrhyndeudraeth, near Porthmadog, on the A4085.

The boys were A-level students at Shrewsbury College.

Harvey’s mother, Crystal Owen, said earlier that she didn’t know that her son, 17, was going camping.

Politicians also shared their condolences with the loved ones of the four boys.

Mark Drakeford, the first minister of Wales, said on Twitter: "Devastating news.

"My thoughts are with their family and friends during this incredibly difficult time as they deal with the unimaginable."

Local MP Liz Saville Roberts and local Senedd member Mabon ap Gwynfor said in a joint statement: "This news is truly heartbreaking and foremost as parents ourselves our thoughts go out to the families and friends of the four young men whose lives have been lost in this tragic accident.

"We would like to pay tribute to the emergency services and local mountain rescue teams involved in the search operation and to members of the public for their assistance in helping to locate the vehicle.

"No words can sufficiently reflect the sorrow that this news brings to our whole community."

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