The sister of a teenager who has been missing for five months made an emotional appeal today for her to “come home” ahead of her birthday.
Leah Croucher, 19, vanished on her way to work in Milton Keynes on February 15.
Despite extensive police searches and media and poster appeals, there have been no sightings of Leah nor any leads about her whereabouts.
In April, police said three witnesses may have spotted Leah between 9.30am and 11.15am, looking “angry, upset and crying.”
But, despite police making a public appeal for information, nobody else has come forward.
Her older sister Jade Croucher, 26, hopes the teenager will contact her or family members before her 20th birthday, on August 14.
She said: “It would be lovely if she messaged me on her birthday.
“Every day, I wake up with the hope that we will get a little bit of a breakthrough that Leah is safe and well.
“I’m constantly checking my phone, but so far there has been nothing.”
Police have said the phone was switched off at the time of her disappearance and has not been used since.
Jade, a payroll officer, added: “It has been the hardest five months of my life and my family.
“It is hard to explain it because you can’t compare it to anything else.
“There are days when you can’t sleep, she is is always on your mind. It doesn’t come easy, we have a lot of sleepless nights.
“She could contact me on social media or via Snapchat – she used Snapchat a lot.
“She knows I am always there for her. I always have been.”
She described Leah as “my little shadow when she was growing up.”
She added: “Leah is just a normal 19-year-old girl she doesn’t want to be out partying. She just wants to be relaxing.
“We have to cope, we need to remain strong. There are huge ups and there are huge downs. We are hoping all together.
“Not knowing is really hard, we try to pull it together and other days it is horrible.”
She added: “The last conversation we had was by text and it was completely normal. Leah was just talking about day to day stuff, work, friends, etc. She sounded happy and fine.”
Jade is raising money for the national Missing People charity, which has supported her family.
She climbed Snowdon in north Wales to raise more than £3,300 so far.
A £5,000 reward is being offered for information about Leah.