Plot thickens in Byron mystery
By MARY MANN and BRIAN BIGG
THE discovery of human bones in Sydney has led to public speculation they could belong to a couple who went missing from Byron Bay almost 29 years ago.
Sydney media has reported the bones of two people have been dug up during construction of a desalination plant in Kurnell, on the shore of Botany Bay.
It has raised speculation they may belong to one of a number of couples who vanished from NSW in the late 1970s and early 1980s, including young couple Alan 'Marty' Fox and Annexe Andriaansen, who were last seen at Byron Bay in 1979.
But police are still waiting on DNA results, and have not been drawn into the speculation.
Alan Fox, 21, and his fianc?e, Anneke Adriaansen, 19, were last seen at Byron Bay at 6pm on January 12, 1979, sitting at a bus stop opposite the Great Northern Hotel in Jonson Street.
Alan and Anneke were in the region looking for land to buy.
When the couple failed to return to their homes and jobs in Sydney's North Shore by January 17, the Fox and Adriaansen families began to panic.
The search for the pair was centred largely in Byron Bay, where the couple were believed to have been last sighted by a former school friend at the bus stop.
Former North Coast detective, Eric Strong, whose job it was to locally investigate the disappearance of Fox and Adriaansen, is now retired and living at Ballina. Mr Strong said he remembered Fox's father, Harry Fox, coming to Byron Bay every year for years afterwards, handing out flyers, doing interviews and asking people to help him search for his son.
In March 1992, on one of Harry Fox's visits to Byron Bay, he told The Northern Star the pain had not gone away.
"You run through all sorts of feelings pain, frustration, guilt," he said.
"It's emotional when I go to the bus stop. You wonder where they went to.
"One has to hope. But because of the circumstances and being rational, I believe them to be dead."
In August, 2005, although their bodies were not yet found, the pair was formally concluded dead by NSW Coroner Carl Milovanovich.
Investigations into the bones are continuing.