- The corner of the Pyrenees Hwy where 12-year-old Terry Floyd was last seen
on June 28, 1975. Picture: Jeremy Bannister, The Courier
Sheryle Cain kisses the picture of her brother Terry every night. Next to
her is a family photo.
Daryl Floyd, photo from The Courier.
Click here for ABC radio interview with Terry's brother Daryl, January 31st
Missing boy mystery still
TWENTY-SIX years after the disappearance of a Maryborough boy,
new evidence has surfaced this week which could yet lead to a
conviction in the case.
An inquest at Melbourne Coroners
Court yesterday heard how police were continuing to interview
witnesses this week about the disappearance of 12-year-old Terry
James Floyd, who was last seen at the intersection of the Sunraysia
and Pyrenees Highways near Avoca on Saturday, June 28, 1975 about
The inquest was told that a man known as ''Unc'', widely
believed to have some involvement in Floyd's disappearance, had been
cleared of playing any part.
Homicide Squad Detective Senior Sergeant Ron Iddles told the
inquest that Francis Robert Drake, who died in 1991, and believed to
be ''Unc'', had an alibi and that evidence against him was unable to
Det Sen Sgt Iddles said more people were likely to be
interviewed following the discovery of the new evidence.
Earlier this year Det Sen Sgt Iddles interviewed Russell
Kenneth Jones, who was staying at Maryborough at the time and now
lives in Red Cliffs.
Jones was initially interviewed in the days following Floyd's
disappearance, admitting he had been in Avoca on the day in question
and he had been driving a 1969 Holden panel van, fawn in colour.
''Jones was on bail at the time for offences of indecent
assault, as a result of assaulting a young boy in a toilet block in
Ballarat,'' Det Sen Sgt Iddles said.
''He was convicted of this offence and sentenced to two years'
He said on the account given by Jones, there was a strong
possibility he would have seen Floyd on June 28, 1975.
Jones was interviewed on May 10 this year, and denied any
involvement in the disappearance of Floyd.
Coroner Francis Hender yesterday found Floyd had likely died
from unknown causes at an unknown place at an unknown time.
Mr Hender said the inquest could be re-opened if new
information came to hand.
Outside court, Det Sen Sgt Iddles said it was still possible
that someone could face charges in court.
''There are some other avenues to be explored and I'm
confident that I'm going in the right direction.''
While the inquest provided some solace for the brothers and
sisters of Floyd, they said only locating his body would finally put
the matter to rest.
''We want to be able to bury him with our mother and father,''
sister Sheryl Cain said.
The coroner heard that Terry Floyd was a normal 12-year-old
boy attending Maryborough Technical School who argued with his
parents from time to time, but was no different to other children of
the same age.
His parents, Ken and Dororthy have passed away since Terry's
His brother Daryl and sisters Debbie and Sheryl attended
On the day of his disappearance, Floyd had played football
with Rovers under-15s at Maryborough's Jubilee Park before being
driven from Alma to Avoca by a person he referred to as his uncle.
After playing with friends that afternoon in Avoca, he was
taken to the intersection of the Sunraysia and Pyrenees Highways
where, according to witnesses, he began to hitchhike to Maryborough.
Three witnesses saw a boy hitchhiking at about 5pm, all of
whom also reported seeing a white Holden panel van or utility in the
Until this week, no-one had reported seeing Floyd after that
time. But Det Sen Sgt Iddles, said another person recently
interviewed had claimed to see a boy fitting Floyd's description
early on Sunday, June 29.
More than 200 people have been interviewed regarding the
disappearance since June 1975.
Loved ones missing but never forgotten
3/08/2009 9:29:00 AM - Bendigo Advertiser
SHERYLE Cain still remembers the day her brother Terry Floyd
disappeared as if it was yesterday.
Terry, then 12, was last seen alive on Saturday, June 28, 1975.
“I can’t wrap my head around that - that, yes, I do have a brother
who has been missing for all of these years,” she said.
“You know, we were just a normal family, with Mum and Dad and six
“Thirty-four years later, with Terry’s body never found, the
family is still looking for answers.
“I don’t think that he’d still be alive,” Ms Cain said.
Terry grew up in Maryborough, one of six children to parents Ken
and Dorothy Floyd.
“He was cheeky, he didn’t like going to school,” she said.
“He was a bit defiant at times and he always seemed to be in
On the day he went missing, Terry played football for the
Maryborough Rovers under 15s at Jubilee Oval, just like he did every
other Saturday morning.
But instead of going with his teammates to watch the seniors play
at Harcourt, he made his way to Avoca - about 25km from Maryborough -
and visited a school acquaintance, Greg Jess.
Mrs Jess offered Terry a ride home, but he said that he didn’t
need one, because his “Unk” was picking him up at the intersection of
the Pyrenees and Sunraysia highways at 4.30pm.
Greg Jess accompanied Terry to the crossroads, and left him
leaning against a white post.
At his mother’s request, Greg returned some 15 minutes later to
check on Terry.
Greg saw him walking towards Maryborough.
He had no idea that this would be the last time Terry would be
There are several reported sightings about this time of a young
boy being near a white or cream-coloured panel van or ute with a canopy.
“We just assumed that he got into that car,” Ms Cain said.
At 7.30 that night, Terry’s parents reported him missing to Maryborough
Twelve years later to the minute, Mrs Floyd died from a brain tumour.
“The doctors in Melbourne said that it would have been from constant
worry,” Ms Cain said.
If it’s possible to have a peaceful death, she believes that her mother
“She told her sister not to worry, that she could see Terry standing at
the end of the hospital bed,” Ms Cain said.
“They had removed 80 per cent of her brain. She didn’t recognise any of
us, but she could see Terry.”
Ms Cain said it was important to her parents’ memory that she find out
what happened to her brother.
“That’s all they ever wanted, was to find him,” she said.
“Mum always said 'I want to find my boy so that I can bury him’.”
Ms Cain said that after 34 years of living without knowing what happened,
it hadn’t gotten any easier.
“As soon as you hear on the news or radio that there have been bones
found, you think, 'Oh my god, where was that?’
“If they’ve found skeletal remains somewhere you just always pick up and
think you’ll get a phone call that your brother’s bones have been found.
“It never, ever leaves you. You never stop thinking about them.”
Ms Cain said that over the years, countless avenues had been explored.
“You get a little bit of information and you think 'oh god, this is it’.
“So you go and follow it through, and it’s nothing.
“It’s mentally and physically draining.”
These ups and downs have included the completion of an inquest in 2001 and
watching a Bet Bet property being excavated in 2003 after a tip that Terry’s
remains were there.
The search proved fruitless and the inquest, though thorough, did not
result in a conclusion.
“It’s just left as an open finding because there has been no body found
and not one person that they can pinpoint it on,” Ms Cain said.
“It’s sort of gone off on all different tangents over the years on
One such suspect was the man that Terry referred to as “Unk”, but
investigations eventually eliminated him.
Ms Cain believes that the person responsible for Terry’s disappearance is
still out there.
“We’ve been told it’s only a matter of time, because most people who
murder like to brag to somebody about it,” she said.
Even if the truth about that day eventually comes to light, Ms Cain isn’t
certain it will bring peace to her and her family.
"What will happen to me when it’s solved I don’t know, because this is
what my whole life has been,” she said.
As if dealing with Terry’s disappearance wasn’t enough for the Floyd
family to cope with, the community was not always supportive, Ms Cain said.
“What my mother and father went through, having people stare at them in
the street and being pointed at and saying `that’s Terry Floyd’s parents’.
“They had stigma involved as well, because nobody knew what happened to
“If he was killed in a car accident people would have been saying `poor
“But it was always the whispers that Mum couldn’t handle.”
Ms Cain hopes that her brother’s disappearance won’t be unsolved for much
“I don’t want to leave this earth and not know what’s happened to him,”
If you have information about the disappearance of Terry Floyd, or any
other missing person, contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Relative unsure of missing boy's fate
05 Apr, 2010 11:52 PM - The Courier
TERRY James Floyd was just 12 when he disappeared from the roadside
at Avoca in 1975.
A 2001 Melbourne Coroners Court inquest heard
how police continued to interview witnesses the week before the inquest
into Terry's disappearance.
Terry was last seen at the intersection of the Sunraysia and
Pyrenees highways, near Avoca, at 5pm on Saturday, June 28, 1975.
Coroner Francis Hender found Terry had likely died from unknown
causes at an unknown place at an unknown time.
Mr Hender said the inquest could be re-opened if new information
came to hand.
While the inquest found that Terry likely died, no body has been
found and his family still lives in hope he will one day walk through
Despite more than three decades since his disappearance, one
relative is still undecided about the young boy's fate.
"He may be dead, like some people and the police think, but he
could also be working in the mines at Coober Pedy," said the relative,
who did not want to be named.
Terry was the third child of eight _ five boys and three girls _
of Ken and Dorothy Floyd of Maryborough.
His relative who spoke with The Courier believes the boy travelled
to Avoca to see a girlfriend.
"A friend's parents were travelling to Avoca from Maryborough on
that day and saw a boy walking on the side of the road. They were about
to stop, but another car pulled over and Terry got in. That was the last
time Terry was seen," the relative said.
During the search, police scoured bushland and crawled into
mineshafts in the hopes of finding a trace of the Form 1 (now Year 7)
boy from Maryborough High School.
Weeks and months went by and the search was eventually called off.
"We always thought Terry would come back. We didn't think that it
was going to be the last time we would hear from him," Terry's relative
"I always got the impression he caught transport and headed to
"He was a robust kid, who got into a lot of mischief, like any kid
at that age, but he always got on well with his family.
"He joined in a lot of school activities and was pretty good at
sports, particularly football."
Terry's parents died many years ago without knowing their son's
"If Terry is still alive and walked down the streets of
Maryborough today, no one would know that he was Terry Floyd. After 30
years, no one would recognise him," his relative said.
Terry Floyd's brother Daryl never
stopped digging for the tragic truth
POLICE believe convicted paedophile Raymond Kenneth Jones may have
got away with murder 35 years ago.
New evidence implicates Jones in the abduction and killing of missing
Victorian schoolboy Terry Floyd.
An old gold mine near Avoca is about to be excavated on the strength of
information that suggests the body of 12-year-old Terry might have been dumped
Legal constraints prevent the Herald Sun from being able to
reveal details of some of the evidence against Jones.
Prominent clinical psychiatrist Alan Bartholomew warned a judge in 1975 -
the year Terry disappeared - that Jones was capable of murder.
Jones, 58, has been a suspect in the case for years, but police have so
far been unable to get enough evidence to charge him with Terry's murder.
The Herald Sun recently tracked Jones down to a small town near
He insisted he wasn't involved in Terry's disappearance and had nothing to
fear from the new search for Terry's body.
"I've just about had a belly full of it all. I'm not going to just
elaborate on anything," Jones said.
"I've bloody got nothing to hide, it's just that I'm bloody that sick of
it all. I had nothing to do with it."
Police and Terry Floyd's brother Daryl have separately discovered
information that strengthens the link between Jones and the 1975 disappearance
That information doesn't mean Jones is necessarily guilty, but it does
firm him as a suspect in police eyes.
It was the new leads that led to Daryl Floyd and his family recently
deciding to pay for the search of the disused mine in the hope of finding
There have been unsuccessful searches for Terry's body in the past, the
last one in 2003, but Mr Floyd said this latest search was based on what he
believed was credible new information gathered since then.
"One of the new leads is that I was told by a reliable source that Terry's
body was dumped down this mine and the person who told me is somebody who is in
a position to have access to such information," Mr Floyd said.
With the support of Victoria Police, Mr Floyd
has been able to get permission from the Department of Sustainability and
Environment to excavate the 20m deep Morning Star mine at Bung Bong Hill, near
The excavation is due to start within days and is expected to take weeks.
Mr Floyd said he also hoped the search would discover forensic evidence
that would result in charges finally being laid over the death of his missing
"There might be some blood on Terry's clothing, or some other DNA
evidence. There might be a weapon down there," he said.
"The main purpose for the search is to see if Terry's body is down there,
but if we can also find some other evidence that would be a blessing because we
have gone through 35 years without knowing what happened to Terry."
Victoria Police did not consider the information gathered by Mr Floyd
about the possible burial site was strong enough for it to organise and pay for
excavation of the mine.
But veteran homicide squad detective Ron Iddles has been working closely
with Mr Floyd and helped him get permission to carry out the search.
If the search finds Terry's body, or any other evidence, then Sen-Sgt
Iddles will arrange forensic tests through Victoria Police and will follow up
Sen-Sgt Iddles identified Jones as possibly being the person responsible
for abducting Terry and interviewed him about the case in 2001.
" I came across information, which came from Buster Allen (a friend of
Jones who is now dead) and I'll put it to you that he told people that you were
responsible for the actual death of Terry Floyd," he told Jones.
"That you placed him in a mine shaft somewhere near Bung Bong Hill. What
do you say to that?" Jones replied: "Nothing, it's a lie."
Sen-Sgt Iddles said: "On the account given by Jones, when he was
travelling from Avoca to Maryborough, there is a strong possibility he would
have seen Floyd, although he denies this."
He said he would love to solve the mystery and even after 35 years he was
still hopeful charges would eventually be laid.
"We never close the file on unsolved crimes like the disappearance of
Terry Floyd and we are always prepared to act when new leads come in," Sen-Sgt
People with information can contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Mineshaft search for boy's remains after 35
EXCAVATION of a mineshaft near Avoca will start this month in a
bid to solve the 35-year-old mystery of a missing boy.
Terry James Floyd, 12, disappeared from a country road at Avoca on
Saturday June 28, 1975.
He was last seen at the intersection of the Pyrenees and
Sunraysia Highways about 5pm that day.
A 2001 coronial inquest found Terry had likely died from
unknown causes at an unknown place at an unknown time.
Terry's brother Daryl, who was 10 at the time of Terry's
disappearance, believes an old mineshaft at Bung Bong may hold the
answer to the mystery.
Information he has received in recent months has led him to
believe his brother's body may have been dumped down the shaft.
He said the search for Terry had taken a toll on his family.
He said the stress had contributed to the premature death of
his mother, Dorothy Floyd.
She died, aged 56, 12 years to the day after Terry went
''Every year that comes around we don't have just the one
anniversary for Terry it's also my mum's anniversary as well,'' Mr
Mining records indicate the mine, which is in a state forest,
was last active in 1920.
But it was used as a dump for sewerage in the 1960s and early
Mr Floyd has the approval of Victoria Police and the
Department of Sustainability and Environment for the excavation.
He also has permission from the South Australian mining
company which holds the lease on the mine.
A Maldon-based mine excavation company will perform the
Once the excavation begins, a vet will be on site to identify
animal bones at the site.
In the event any human remains are found, police will be
Digging up Terry Floyd's past
EXCAVATION experts hope to find the body of schoolboy Terry Floyd,
who disappeared 35 years ago, when they start digging in a disused gold
Terry, 12, disappeared while hitchhiking from Avoca to his Maryborough
home in 1975.
The Herald Sun revealed last month that new evidence implicated
convicted paedophile Raymond Kenneth Jones.
Jones, 58, has been a suspect for years, but police have have not had
enough evidence to charge him with murder.
Jones recently told the Herald Sun he wasn't involved in Terry's
Terry's brother, Daryl, has spent decades investigating the case and has
discovered evidence suggesting Terry's body may have been dumped in the 20m-deep
Morning Star mine.
Police did not consider the information gathered by Mr Floyd strong enough
to commission the dig.
Since the Herald Sun article last month several local people and
businesses, including excavator Ballarat Coates Hire, have donated fencing and
other equipment. The excavation is still expected to cost the Floyd family about
Veteran homicide squad detective Ron Iddles has organised for a detective
and a crime scene examiner to be at the mine site.
"If a bone or bones are found, the crime scene examiner will take a
photograph and email it to the pathologist. If the bone appears to be human we
will declare it to be a crime scene," he said.
Daryl Floyd said he had a strong feeling Terry's body was in the mine, but
realised the search might not find anything.
"If we find something then my family can have closure. Terry can have a
burial and be laid to rest with our parents," Mr Floyd said.
Mine to be searched for missing boy's remains
Excavation work at a mine shaft in Avoca will start
tomorrow, to search for the remains of a boy who went missing 35 years ago.
Terry Floyd was 12 years old when he disappeared at Avoca, west of
Maryborough in in 1975.
His brother Daryl is paying for the excavation work because he says he is
confident his brother's remains are in the mine.
"Very anxious at the moment. It's a weird feeling, not knowing how to be.
Yes, very anxious in the outcome and that type of thing but at the same time
very hopeful. We'll see what comes ... of that," he said.
Mine grave: man thinks he's found site of
EXCAVATION of an old mineshaft near Avoca begins today in the hopes
of solving a 35-year mystery.
Preliminary works were carried
out in recent weeks to ensure the shaft in a state forest at Bung Bong
Hill was structurally sound for an excavation crew to work in during the
painstaking search for the body of Maryborough boy, Terry James Floyd,
who disappeared in 1975.
Terry, then aged 12, was last seen on Saturday, June 28, 1975,
standing on the roadside of the Pyrenees Highway, seven kilometres from
His younger brother Daryl, who was 10 at the time, strongly
believes the mineshaft, only 500 metres from where Terry was last seen,
is the final resting place of the cheeky, well-liked boy.
After years of researching the case, scrutinising the 254-page
police brief on his brother's disappearance and following new
information received in recent months, Daryl believes his brother's body
may be down the shaft.
The Department of Sustainability and Environment and the mine's
lease-holder, a South Australian mining company, have given permission
for Daryl to excavate the shaft. The search also has the approval of
Daryl is spending tens of thousands of dollars of his own money to
find his brother's remains, while generous business owners have donated
vital items to be used in the search, including machinery and security
Steven and Brooke Burchell, a father-and-daughter excavation crew
from Compact Mining at Maldon, will begin work tomorrow to start
removing 35 years' worth of rubbish dumped in the 20 metre-deep shaft.
During preliminary works rubbish removed from the shaft mouth included
oil cans and drums, carpet, clothes and household rubbish. One rubbish
skip has already been filled.
The Burchells are expected to clear about a metre of rubbish each
day and Daryl believes his brother’s remains could be as far down as 17
or 18 metres.
Once the excavation begins, a vet will be on site to identify
animal bones. In the event any human remains are found, police will be
Victoria Police said there are no solid facts to support the
belief that the body of Terry is in the disused mine, a police spokesman
“This is the reason Victoria Police decided not to fund the cost
of the excavation,’’ the spokesman said.
“The Terry Floyd case remains open and police are always prepared
to act on new information and commit resources where appropriate.’’
Mining records indicate the mine was last active in 1920, but it
was used as a dump for sewerage in the 1960s and early 1970s, just
before the disappearance of Terry.
“I’m feeling quite anxious at the moment,’’ Daryl said yesterday.
“Terry’s disappearance has haunted my family for 35 years, now I want to
get this over and done with. I want some closure.’’
On the day of Terry’s disappearance, two separate witnesses told
police they saw a ''skinny, wiry’’ boy standing next to a white panel
van on the Pyrenees Highway.
The last sighting was made by a man who was dumping animal offal
into the bush. He told police he first saw a boy standing next to the
vehicle at Bung Bong Hill about 4.55pm on June 28, 1975.
When he returned to the highway minutes later, the panel van was
still on the roadside, but there was no sign of the boy.
Daryl’s love for his big brother has never waned. For months after
his disappearance, the Floyds held out hope that Terry had run away and
would be found safe and well.
But as those months turned into years, Daryl’s hope turned into
despair and then anger as he realised that his big brother was probably
dead and would never be coming home.
A 2001 coronial inquiry found Terry had likely died from unknown
causes at an unknown place at an unknown time.
The 35-year search for Terry has taken its toll on the Floyd
family. Daryl said the stress had contributed to the premature death of
his mother, Dorothy. She died, aged 56, 12 years to the day after Terry
disappeared. He said his remaining siblings were divided by the
“Some of them are handling it very well, while others are still
not coping and can’t even talk about it.”
Anyone who may have information about the disappearance of Terry
Floyd is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Mine search begins for boy's remains
Workers have excavated about 10 metres from a former mine
shaft near Avoca, in central Victoria, in the search for the remains of a boy
who went missing 35 years ago.
Terry Floyd, 12, was last seen on the Pyrenees Highway east of the town in
His brother Daryl believes the body is in the shaft and began excavation
works on Saturday.
He estimates works will be finished within a fortnight and says workers
have so far found animal bones and debris.
"A lot of buckets, it looks like from either a concrete or a painter has
been coming out [and dumping debris], we have removed some animal remains at
this stage, [Victoria Police] forensics are reviewing those bones which come
from the shaft," he said.
Mr Floyd says work will resume next weekend and could finish within a
"Very mixed feelings. You are very anxious, it's a hard feeling to
describe. Wanting a result, hoping to get some sort of closure, that's what it's
all about," he said.
Car parts found in old mine during search for body
A VEHICLE engine and other car parts found at a disused mine shaft at
Avoca may hold the key to the disappearance of a 12-year-old Maryborough
boy 35 years ago.
The four cylinder engine and what is believed
to be a tail shaft, were found last weekend by a Maldon excavation crew
searching for the remains of Terry Floyd, who disappeared from the
outskirts of Avoca on June 28, 1975.
Homicide detectives confirmed yesterday that police were
investigating the discovery on Sunday in the Morning Star gold mine,
just off the Pyrenees Highway, and would try to trace the owner of the
VicRoads data bases will be checked in an effort to trace the
owner. As their computerised records only go back to 1982, police may
have to sift through years of microfiche and hard copies to find the
Convicted paedophile Raymond Kenneth Jones has long been a suspect
in the murder, but denied any involvement when questioned by police.
Jones is believed to have been familiar with the area after
spending part of his childhood there.
Terry's brother Daryl, who is funding the mine shaft excavation,
said yesterday that he believed his own investigation was "heading in
the right direction'', but he was not allowing himself to become
After scrutinising the 254-page police brief and on receiving new
information in recent months, Daryl believes the mine shaft, 500 metres
from where Terry was last see, is the final resting place of his
Daryl and the excavation crew will return to the mine shaft
The team has already dug 10 metres into the 20-metre gold mine.
Anything of interest is recorded by a crime scene photographer, the
pictures are then sent to Melbourne where they are examined by a
pathologist. A detective is also on site during digging.
Missing Maryborough boy: mine search hits snag
THE brother of a Maryborough boy missing for 35 years is confident
the search for the 12-year-old's remains in a disused Avoca gold mine
could be finished by this Sunday.
Working only at weekends, a
Maldon excavation crew has already dug
14 metres of the 20-metre mine shaft looking for the body of Terry
James Floyd, who disappeared from the Pyrenees Highway on the outskirts
of Avoca on June 28, 1975.
Terry's brother Daryl believes the body could be as far as 17 or
18 metres down the Morning Star mine, only 500 metres from where the
Maryborough school boy was last seen.
Daryl, who is funding the search of the mine after receiving new
information about his missing brother in recent months, said the
excavation team was stalled last weekend by tree stumps and an old
kitchen stove which had plugged the shaft.
Unable to use a standard chainsaw, the crew painstakingly cut up
the huge pine stumps with an air saw.
"Getting the stove out of the shaft was another snag. Because of
its sheer size and shape, it became jammed about four or five feet from
the top. It was a big relief when it finally squeezed through the
opening," Daryl said yesterday. "Barring any other snags, the mine could
be fully excavated by the end of this weekend.''
Daryl said he was trying to keep an open mind about the search.
"(Police) have told me to live by the ABC method ... assume
nothing, believe nothing, check everything," he said.
Anything of interest found in the mine shaft is recorded by a
crime scene photographer, and the pictures are then examined by a
pathologist. A detective is also on site during digging.
Hunt for brother's body costly
DARYL Floyd is almost financially ruined by the search for his
brother, who has been missing for more than three decades.
The Rutherglen farmer has gone through his life savings to excavate
a disused mine shaft near Avoca in the search for the body of Terry,
who, at the age of 12, disappeared from alongside the Pyrenees
Highway on June 28, 1975.
More than $20,000 has been spent since the search began six
weeks ago following new information in the 35-year-old case. Daryl
must find at least another $45,000 to pay the Maldon excavation crew
when it finishes at the Bung Bong Hill site in coming days.
Daryl became convinced Terry's body was dumped down the mine
shaft after he received new information several months ago.
While detectives have been on site at the mine since the
search began, Daryl has not received any financial assistance from
Victoria Police in an effort to find his brother's final resting
Victoria Police said there were no solid facts to support the
belief that the body of Terry was in the mine, a police spokesman
This was the reason Victoria Police decided not to fund the
cost of the excavation.
However, the spokesman said the Terry Floyd case remained open
and police were always prepared to act on new information and commit
resources where appropriate.
Boy's shirt found in Avoca mine
13 Nov, 2010 12:00 AM
A SHIRT believed to belong to missing Maryborough boy Terry Floyd has
been found in a disused mine shaft near Avoca.
The red Miller's
shirt was discovered by an excavation crew on Thursday after a six-week
search of the former Morning Star gold mine at Bung Bong Hill.
The shirt, found in good condition about 25 metres down the shaft,
is believed to have been worn by Terry the day he disappeared from along
the Pyrenees Highway on June 28, 1975.
Terry's brother Daryl, who has been financing the excavation of
the shaft, located only 500 metres from where his brother was last seen,
was confident the children's sized shirt belonged to the missing
"We were a poor family and so didn't have many clothes. Terry had
two Miller's shirts, a blue one and a red one, and he was wearing one
the day he disappeared," Daryl said yesterday from the search site.
"I was only 10 when Terry went missing and I can remember stories
that Mum told at the time saying that he was wearing a Miller's shirt,
but I can't remember which colour it was.
"I will be shattered if we don't find anything after the search,
but the discovery of this shirt has lifted my hopes and makes me
convinced that the information given to me about this particular mine
shaft a few month ago was spot-on."
While Terry disappeared in the mid-1970s and the shirt was found
among rubbish dating back to only the early 1980s, Daryl believes the
item of clothing may have been snagged on the side of the shaft for some
years before being dislodged. The shirt has been bagged ready for police
Yesterday, the Maldon excavation crew reached the 25.2-metre mark
of the shaft, but experts believe the mine could be as deep as 30 metres.
Daryl said the excavation crew, which initially worked at the site
only at weekends, had spent eight hours each day since last Saturday
down the mine removing tonnes of rubbish in the search for Terry's body.
"They go down at 9am, come back up for a break at 3pm, then go
back down for another two hours. They need to work six hours straight
because getting up an down the ladder, which goes down 25 metres at the
moment, is just too hard," Daryl said.
Anything of interest found in the mine is recorded by a crime
scene photographer and pictures are then sent to Melbourne where they
are examined by a pathologist. A detective has also been on site during
No decision on funding help in mine search for
A DECISION is yet to be made on whether the state government or
Victoria Police will help fund the excavation of an Avoca mine shaft in
the search for a missing Maryborough boy.
A spokesman for
Police Minister James Merlino said yesterday talks were continuing to
find a funding solution for Daryl Floyd, who has spent his life savings
in the search for his brother Terry, who, at the age of 12, disappeared
35 years ago.
The minister's spokesman said he did not want to see the project
abandoned and would discuss its funding with Victoria Police Chief
Commissioner Simon Overland.
This followed a plea at the weekend by Daryl for help to finance
the search of the Morning Star gold mine at Bung Bong Hill. The
full-scale excavation of the mine, which began early last month, has
already cost $20,000, with another $45,000 needed to pay the Maldon
mining crew leading the search.
Daryl is financing the mine excavation following new information
in the case. The search has left the Rutherglen farmer financially
ruined after he spent is life savings looking for his brother. He now
fears the search may have to be abandoned if funding is not found.
While detectives have been on site at the mine since the search
began, Daryl has not received any financial assistance from Victoria
Police in an effort to find his brother's final resting place.
When the search began last month, a Victoria Police spokesman said
there were no solid facts to support the belief that the body of Terry
was in the mine. This was the reason Victoria Police decided not to fund
the cost of the excavation.
Last Thursday a shirt believed to belong to Terry was found about
25 metres down the shaft.
The red Miller's shirt was in good condition and has been handed
over to police for examination.
No clues on 35-year-old missing boy case
Victoria Police say the excavation of a mine shaft has
produced no new evidence about what happened to a missing 12-year-old boy 35
Terry Floyd, from Maryborough in central Victoria, disappeared on his way
home from the nearby town of Avoca on June 28, 1975.
He was last seen hitchhiking on the Pyrenees Highway.
The boy's body has never been found and police believe he was abducted and
Last month Daryl Floyd, the missing boy's brother, started excavating an
abandoned mine shaft near the place where he was last seen.
However Detective Inspector John Potter from the homicide squad says the
excavation has not produced any answers.
"At this time there is no new evidence to link a suspect to Terry's
disappearance," he said.
Police have issued a fresh appeal for information and have increased the
$5,000 reward to $100,000.
But Daryl Floyd says the family is still seeking answers.
"For me and for the Floyd family we need to get some closure one way or
the other," he said.
"That is finding out either whether Terry is there or not there. It puts
our mind to rest."
Police issue fresh appeal,
$100,000 reward for information over disappearance of schoolboy Terry Floyd
POLICE today appealed for public help to solve the 35-year
mystery of what happened to missing schoolboy Terry Floyd.
Homicide squad Detective-Inspector John Potter said evidence suggested
12-year-old Terry was abducted and murdered.
Det-Insp Potter said he believed a $100,000 reward could help solve
Terry disappeared while on his way home to Maryborough from nearby
Avoca on June 28, 1975.
He was last seen hitchhiking on the Pyrenees Highway between Avoca and
Despite extensive investigations and searches spanning 35 years,
Terry's body has never been found.
His brother Daryl Floyd is in the process of excavating a disused mine
shaft near Avoca after circumstantial evidence suggested Terry's body might
have been dumped down it.
Det-Insp Potter today appealed for anyone with information which could
help solve the case to come forward.
"The $5000 reward previously on offer has been increased to $100,000
in the hope that someone can provide that key piece of information that will
bring Terry's killer to justice and provide the Floyd family with closure,''
"We believe there is someone out there that knows what happened to
Terry and after more than three decades his family deserves to finally lay
him to rest.
"If anyone in the community knows where he is then we ask them to
The Herald Sun revealed last month the search of the mine shaft was
in danger of being abandoned as Daryl Floyd was running out of money to
That prompted Victoria Police to step in and agree to provide some
"Victoria Police has decided to fund the majority of the excavation of
the Morning Star mine shaft at Avoca in the search for suspected murder
victim Terry Floyd's body,'' acting assistant commissioner Gerry Ryan told
the Herald Sun in November.
"While there is no clear evidence to suggest that Terry's body was
dumped in the mine shaft, we are committed to providing justice and closure
for the Floyd family and want to ensure that all leads are followed up''.
Daryl Floyd today said he was determined to keep excavating the mine
until the bottom of it was reached.
The Herald Sun revealed in September that new evidence
convicted paedophile Raymond Kenneth Jones in the abduction and killing
Jones, 58, has been a suspect for years, but police have so far have
been unable to get enough evidence to charge him with Terry's murder.
He recently told the Herald Sun he wasn't involved in Terry's
disappearance and had nothing to fear from the new search for Terry's body.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333
000 or visit www.crimestoppers.com.au.
Terry Floyd went missing after
starring in junior footy game
DESPITE only being 12, Terry Floyd was such a good footballer that
he was a leading player in the Maryborough Rovers under-15 team.
He played a blinder for the Rovers on Saturday, June 28, 1975, and went
missing later that day.
His younger brother Daryl Floyd, who was 10 when Terry disappeared,
believes Terry was abducted and murdered within hours of the footy game
Mr Floyd also believes he now has a very good idea of how Terry spent his
last day alive.
''I believe Terry had organised with one of the football club helpers,
Frank Drake, who was known to the boys as Unc and who has since died, to give
him a lift from Maryborough to Avoca straight after the game,'' he said.
''Terry had told a school friend on the Friday that he was going to Avoca
the next day to check on why his girlfriend hadn't been at school that day.
''I believe what cost Terry his life was being 10 to 15 minutes late for
his lift back home to Maryborough. Terry had told a friend that Unc was picking
him up in Avoca at 4.30pm to take him home.
''We know it was about 4.45pm before Terry arrived at the junction of the
Pyrenees and Sunraysia highways to be picked up.
''I presume Unc arrived as arranged at 4.30pm and when Terry didn't turn
up he drove off without him.
''That left Terry stranded. He would have been scared that he would get
into trouble for being late home so would have been willing to accept a lift.''
Evidence suggests Terry got into a white or fawn panel van that stopped as
he stood by the side of the main road from Avoca to Maryborough.
He and Daryl Floyd spent the previous night sleeping at their
grandmother's house, which was next door to the Floyd family home in Avoca Rd,
Mr Floyd said he saw Terry leave his grandmother's house at 8.30 the next
morning to walk to nearby Jubilee Park to play football for the Rovers - and he
never saw him again.
''Terry wasn't just my brother, he was my best mate,'' he said.
A necklace found snagged on a jutting rock 38 metres down the mine shaft
being excavated on the suspicion Terry's body was dumped in it brought memories
of his brother flooding back.
While Mr Floyd can't be sure the sterling silver necklace is the one Terry
habitually wore, it certainly could be.
The necklace has been examined by a jeweller, who confirmed it was made
about the time Terry disappeared in 1975.
''It was very personal to Terry because I can remember every time he
played football he would always remove the necklace, put it in his front pocket,
he would give it two or three taps to make sure it was there,'' Mr Floyd said.
''Terry, in the midst of fighting and wrestling, as you did as kids, if I
happened to break that necklace on Terry I would cop a couple more thumps on the
arm for doing that.
''I know Terry would have been wearing that necklace the day he
Collapsed mine halts Maryborough search
A COLLAPSED mine shaft has halted the search for a missing
Maryborough boy near Avoca.
The collapse came as miners
uncovered thousands of cow heads thrown into the shaft in 1979, leaving
four years of bones and other material to sort through before reaching
the period schoolboy Terry Floyd disappeared.
Terry’s brother Daryl Floyd said the miners were reassessing how
to get through the collapsed shaft and cow heads.
Mr Floyd said miners found the cow heads in a second shaft
connected to the one they had been excavating.
“The shaft that the heads are in, it is behind the one we had been
working in,” he said.
“What we are thinking is that shaft, the one behind us, might have
been the original shaft that they used to use.
“It has got three feet of sewage.
“We have been down it, it has a 20-foot drop before you get to all
the collapsed stuff. It is very unstable ground.” Terry disappeared more
than 36 years ago, aged 12.
He had played football for Maryborough in the morning, visited a
friend at Avoca in the afternoon and was last seen on the corner of the
Pyrenees and Sunraysia highways.
Mr Floyd believes his brother’s remains are in the mine shaft.
He resumed the excavation earlier this year.
Mr Floyd and the miners returned to Morning Star mine at Bung Bong
Hill, near Avoca, last week.
They discovered the heads and spent the remainder of the week
plotting how they could get through the bones.
Mr Floyd said he hoped to open-cut the area above the new shaft
and drill down to the area they needed to excavate.
He said he needed permission from authorities to open cut the land
and drill into the shaft.