HE?S A TOUGH LITTLE BUGGER
By LINDSAY SAUNDERS
MISSING boy Trent Rose's mum fought back tears as she stood in the front yard of her Kyogle home.
As Wendy Hale spoke of her son, SES volunteers and police searched again around the neighbourhood for Trent, who went missing on Sunday evening.
Her son was a 'quiet kid', Ms Hale said.
"He has taken off before, but it's never been longer than for a few hours," she said.
Police had come to collect Trent and his four brothers from Ms Hale after a weekend access visit.
The boys live with their father, Fred Rose, at Old Grevillia, about 28km north of Kyogle.
"He took off under the house on Sunday when it was time for him and his brothers to leave," Ms Hale said.
"He's here for the weekend every five weeks and didn't want to leave."
Ms Hale said she hadn't been able to sleep, and every noise in the night had her hoping it was her son.
"Trent's a good hider. I hope he's just hiding out. He's a tough little bugger," she said.
Concerned local residents joined the police and SES volunteers from Kyogle, Lismore and Tabulam in the search yesterday.
They again focused on the area near where he was last seen, retracing their steps from Monday.
The banks of the Richmond River and surrounding areas were also searched again and the river and a nearby creek were dragged during the afternoon.
A police dog and police helicopter joined the search for Trent about 2pm yesterday after being delayed for several hours at Coffs Harbour due to bad weather.
The helicopter flew as far north as the Lions Road, without success.
Rain during the afternoon hindered the search. It was called off at 6pm in failing light.
Sgt Aaron Reid, of Kyogle police, said the decision on the focus of the search today would be made at a briefing at 7.30am. He said the police dive squad had been asked to travel from their base in Sydney to Kyogle to search the river.
Cradling his four-monthold son Daniel in his arms, Trent's dad Fred Rose was yesterday, like much of the district, waiting and hoping.
"All I can do is wait and pray," he said, standing under a tree at the search headquarters, established in a park near Wendy Hale's home.
"I just don't know what to think. I just don't know," Mr Rose said.
Trent attends school at The Risk and its principal, Larry Condon, was at the search headquarters and gave police and the media Trent's school photo which had been taken on Friday.
Friends and neighbours walked the streets in the area looking for the blondhaired, blue-eyed boy.
Graeme Hickey said he'd be putting flyers with Trent's photo and details in the 40 or so letterboxes out his way on Boorabee Creek Road.
"You never know ... he might have walked out there. You have to do something to help," he said.