May 6, 2021

Tributes mark two years since Cheltenham teacher Nathan Clarke disappeared in [Cayman Islands]

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Nathan 3From Gloucestershire Echo

Emotional tributes have been left for a Cheltenham school teacher who vanished on a Caribbean island in mysterious circumstances to mark the second anniversary of his suspected death.

Former Pittville School pupil Nathan Clarke had been on a night out with friends in Grand Cayman Island when he disappeared.

Despite a massive search of the island, the only trace of the 31-year-old was his mobile phone, found submerged 50 metres offshore.

The prevailing theory is that he drowned, but the family has never fully accepted that explanation as Nathan had been a strong swimmer.

Other possibilities include a shark attack, abduction or sudden adult death syndrome.

Lizzie Clarke, Nathan’s mum, told the Echo she, her husband Randell, and their other children Daniel and Sam, now had to accept that they would never get answers about what happened.

Nathan 2She posted on the Find Nathan Facebook page: “Two years on and no answers as to why or how and no longer any hope of the sea giving back that which it has taken from us.

“We are left with our own thoughts as to what happened.

“We love and miss him so much and he is always in our thoughts.”

Lizzie, who brought Nathan up in Cheltenham but now lives in France, had been planning to hold a celebration of her son’s life for all his friends and family, but said her own health problems had made that impossible.

However, she said she still hoped to organise an event in future when she was feeling stronger.

She told the 2,200 followers of the tribute site: “We will remember Nathan for his love of life and the laughter and fun he gave to all who met him.

Nathan 1“I know you will keep him in your hearts.”

Nathan, who was working on the island as a teaching assistant, was last seen at around 8.30pm on February 25, 2012 as he, his fiancée Lisa Beck and a group of friends enjoyed drinks at Calico Jack’s bar on Seven Mile Beach.

Lisa said she left Nathan to go to the bar – last seeing him walk towards the water’s edge. Moments later he was gone.

Exhaustive searches from land, air and sea proved fruitless and after three weeks, the island’s emergency services called off the search.

The disappearance left police on the island baffled.

Friends posting on the Find Nathan site admitted they still wondered what could have happened to him.

Susan Smith said: “It is hard to believe that it’s been two years for Nathan.

“He will always be remembered by everyone who met and knew him.”

Louise Holland said: “Always think of him and wonder what has happened to him xx.”

PHOTOS: Gloucestershire Echo

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