Christmas a painful memory after son’s disappearance
Christmas is supposed to be the most wonderful time of year, but for the parents of Kasper Ellis it has become the painful anniversary.
"It reminds us all the time of waiting for Kasper and hoping he was going to be with us on the Christmas that he disappeared. That's kind of been the feeling that just repeats itself, over and over again, every year," Kasper's dad David said.
On Christmas Eve in 2015, 25-year-old Kasper boarded a train at Booval Train Station and told his Mum, Ruth Ellis, he was going to visit a friend at Rocklea.
Security vision captured him hopping off at Trinder Park Train Station instead and he hasn't been seen or heard from since.
"I often think my biggest mistake was that I didn't check to see that he actually was going to see that person," she said.
"He was 25, so he had an adult life, quite often he would go for a few days around Christmas time and stay with his friends and not come back for a few days, so we weren't immediately alarmed."
The process to find their son has been devastating and frustrating for both David and Ruth, who even resorted to hiring a private investigator to get to the bottom of his disappearance.
"We think everything should have been done of course, but the police did explain how it really goes in the real world with missing people and there are not a lot of resources put into it," Mr Ellis said.
"It was only later on, it might have been a year and a half or maybe two years later, that an official search got done.
"We got notified of that and it was like all of sudden there had been an official search and defence force divers had been into the quarry."
After four years, nothing has uncovered Kasper's whereabouts, but his family are hopeful some new leads could come up with answers.
Their message to anyone who might know anything is to speak up.
"It's been four years now and there's no need to not say anything anymore. We'd be very happy for any kind of information that tells us where Kasper went after he left the train station.
"I'm certain that somebody knows, someone has seen him, picked him up and gave him a lift or gave him some advice or helped him in one way or another.
"We would just like whoever those people are just to give us a bell and say 'talk to this person' or 'go and visit this place and you'll find some information'."
Kasper had experienced a relationship breakdown not long before his disappearance and faced some challenges with his mental health.
Anyone with any information on Kasper's whereabouts should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or OJT Investigations Group on 1800 842 075.