Staying together... (front, from left) Johnathan Walker,8, Elizabeth Walker,9, Shaqkaila Nolan,7, and Jayden Nolan,8. (Back) Erica Nolan 10 and Kiesha Nolan, 12. Photo: Jacky Ghossein
THESE are the six children left without their mothers after one was murdered and the other disappeared five years ago.
Malcolm Naden is wanted for questioning in connection with the murder of his cousin’s partner, Kristy Scholes, 24 – mother to Elizabeth, now 10, and Johnathan, 8.
She was found strangled in Naden’s locked bedroom in Dubbo. Now they are being looked after by Margaret Walker, Kristy’s mother-in-law.
They also want to quiz him about the disappearance six months earlier of his cousin Lateesha Nolan, then also aged 24 – mother to Kiesha, now 12, Erica, 11, Jayden, 8 and Shaqkaila, 7. All four are being brought up by their grandmother, Joan Nolan, Lateesha’s mother.
Both women have stepped in to raise the children and ensure that they are not separated, allowing them to stay at the same school. They are both aunts to Naden.
There are few pictures of Lateesha, or Teesh, left at the family home in Dubbo. Most of them are still with detectives. One has been incorporated into the face of a clock that ticks away the hours since she was last seen in 2005.
Another on a side table has been made into a memorial with the words to ‘‘our family’s stolen beauty’’. It also says: ‘‘I miss you more as each day passes and my heart breaks a little more each day. All these mixed emotions I have inside I can’t understand why it was you they took away.’’
The children have put a few coins under the picture, something for mum to spend when she comes back.
Lateesha’s mother, Joan, had some words for Naden. ‘‘If you know anything please come forward and tell us. It has been five years and we would like to know if you know anything. It is hardest when you have things on at school; she’s not there to see them get their awards. They were so young I suppose [when she disappeared]. They ask ‘When is she coming back?’
‘‘You can only say, ‘One day when we have found out where she is.’ We would like to think she is alive but it is a little bit long now.’’