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Family's heartache 'My mom doesn’t do Christmas since Esra went missing, it’s just too hard for her'

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Berna Fidan with a poster of her missing sister Esra.

Berna Fidan with a poster of her missing sister Esra.

Berna Fidan with a poster of her missing sister Esra.

THE sister of a woman who went missing from her Dublin home almost 10 years ago has said Christmas is particularly difficult for the families of missing persons.

Esra Uryun, originally from London, went missing from her home in Collinstown Grove in Clondalkin on February 23, 2011.

Her silver 08-D Renault Twingo was later found abandoned at a car park in Bray, Co Wicklow, but there was no CCTV showing her driving the vehicle and no trace of her has been found since.

Esra’s young son Emin was just two-and-a-half when she disappeared. Esra’s husband Ozgur left Ireland with Emin in the months after her disappearance and they are now living in the U.K

Esra’s sister Berna Fidan has regularly travelled over to Ireland from the UK to seek answers about the disappearance but the pandemic has prevented her travelling over in recent months.

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Esra Uryun

Esra Uryun

Esra Uryun

While Berna travelled here in February for the 9th anniversary of Esra’s disappearance she wasn’t able to come over for Missing Person’s Day earlier this month and is now worried she won’t be allowed travel over for the 10th anniversary in February.

“It’s so hard at this time of year anyway. Because of Covid we couldn’t come over for Missing Persons Day. It was done virtually which isn’t the same because we didn’t get to see all the people we normally get to see.

"It was really sad not to be able to get over. I’m really dreading that I won’t be able to come over for the 10th anniversary in February with the way things are now.

“It was hard enough in December for Missing Persons Day but for that I go over for the day and come back but in February I go over for the whole week and it would break my heart not to be able to do that. I do want to put up those posters again just to remind people. It is 10 years in February.”

Berna will spend Christmas with her daughters who are in her social bubble but said her mother hasn’t celebrated Christmas since Esra’s disappearance.

“My mom doesn’t do Christmas since dad passed away and Esra went missing. It’s just too hard for her to have the family around. We go around a couple of days after as a normal visit. We’d go after on a Sunday just like it’s another Sunday.”

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Esra Uryun disappeared in 2011

Esra Uryun disappeared in 2011

Esra Uryun disappeared in 2011

Berna said Esra was the person in their family who got most excited about Christmas every year.

“It breaks my heart because Esra was the one in the family who piped on about Christmas more than anybody else. It’s not even our religion but she loved the festive thing about it.

"She’d have her tree up and be the first to send Christmas cards and she’d be on the phone on Christmas Day wishing Happy Christmas. I’ve received a few cards through the post and you’d hope one would drop in from her but unfortunately that hasn’t happened.”

She said the pandemic has made this year difficult for everybody.

“I think it has broken everyone down this year. I’m in work all day and you see people who are literally walking around with a different face on. Nobody is happy at the moment. They try their best to be.

"You can’t go near nursing homes for love nor money. People haven’t seen their parents for months. It breaks my heart my heart to think I might not get over for the 10th anniversary but fingers crossed I will.”

Esra left her home at Collinstown Grove in Clondalkin at 7.15am on February 23, 2011 telling her husband she was going to the shops. The first sighting of the car on CCTV was at a nearby roundabout 30 minutes after she left her house despite the fact it is only five minutes away from the home.

The Renault Twingo car she was driving was later spotted in Bray, Co. Wicklow, where CCTV showed it nearly colliding with a Skoda Octavia. It was not clear who was driving the car from the CCTV. Berna has reiterated her appeal for the driver of the Octavia to come forward.

After that incident the Renault was driven into Bray Head car park before driving away and then driving back before it was finally parked in a CCTV blind spot.

The family say they initially considered that Esra may have taken her own life but later did not think this is the most likely scenario as they don’t believe she would leave her son motherless and she was making plans for the future.

Online Editors


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