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A decade on, dad's heart still breaks for murdered daughter

NEVER FORGOTTEN: Mick and Jenny Peet remember their daughter Lateesha Nolan who went missing ten years ago. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail
NEVER FORGOTTEN: Mick and Jenny Peet remember their daughter Lateesha Nolan who went missing ten years ago. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail Mike Knott

JANUARY 4 is a date that will always hold a special place in Mick Peet's heart.

On this day he both celebrates the life of his daughter, and mourns for her.

Sunday marked the 10-year anniversary of the death of Lateesha Nolan, who was murdered by her cousin Malcolm Naden and her body dumped.

A memorial of a traditional wooden carving and black marble plaque was unveiled at Dubbo's Sandy Beach at the weekend, where Lateesha was from, and will stand as a tribute for her four children, family and friends.

"I am so thankful that this memorial has been created. It is a place where her children and family can go to pay their respects and remember the beautiful person that she was," Mr Peet said.

Although he was not able to make the unveiling of the memorial due to health problems, Mr Peet said Lateesha will always have her own special place at his home in Bundaberg.

"We have a memorial for Lateesha in the front garden. It features photos, candles and seven blue roses, because blue was her favourite colour," he said.

"We often have close friends come over just to sit in that special spot with us and talk about Lateesha."

Ms Nolan, the then 24-year-old mother, disappeared from Dubbo on January 4, 2005.

"From day one I always new that something horrible had happened. It was hard to get anyone involved at first and the police told me she had probably run away," he said.

"It then became obvious to everyone that it was serious. I was constantly on the computer trying to find out information, getting truck drivers to put up posters. The searching was constant for seven years."

Malcolm Naden, who had been a prime suspect in the case, was captured in March 2012 after almost seven years on the run.

He admitted to killing Lateesha and another Dubbo woman, Kristy Scholes, who was found murdered in his bedroom at his grandparent's house in June 22, 2005.

Although he gave police information on the whereabouts of his cousin's body after his capture in 2012, her remains have never been found.

"My biggest fear was that he (Naden) would become some sort of folk hero, like Ned Kelly, because he spent so long on the run evading police," Mr Peet said.

"When he was captured, my only thoughts were 'I hope he comes clean. I hope he admits to what he has done'.

"When he told the world he was guilty I went through stages of pure anger. I still can't stand to mention his name to this day. It gives me shivers."

With 10 years gone since the tragic event, Mr Peet says there is not a day that goes by when he doesn't think about his daughter.

"I miss her and mourn for her every single day," he said.

"I miss receiving her Father's Day cards and I am sorry that she never got to meet my children - her brothers and sister.

"She will never be forgotten."

Topics:  lateesha nolan malcolm naden mick peet



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