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Goa Clue In Search For Rock's Missing Preacher - Daily Express, 3rd March 1997

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ARTICLES:1997



Title: Goa Clue In Search For Rock's Missing Preacher
Publication: Daily Express
Date: Monday 3rd March 1997
Writer: Alun Rees



DailyExpress030397.jpg



The trail of vanished rock star Richey Edwards has led to the paradise haven of Goa.

Police say they have their best lead yet in their hunt for the guitarist from the Brit-winning band the Manic Street Preachers.

Lecturer Viv Morris, 48, is certain he saw Edwards in a hippy market near the Indian tourist spot.

The band's appearance on the Brit Awards last week stirred his memory.

"I truly believe it was Richey Edwards," said Mr Morris, 48.

"I had seen him up close, very close, once before. The band played a festival in Swansea in 1993 and I had a backstage pass."

"In Goa he looked very sun-burned and had matted long hair."

"I managed to ask another of the hippies who the other guy was. He told me: 'That's Rick' and he said he'd been with them about 19 months"

Edwards' song-writing talents propelled the group to fame - but he has been missing now for two years, despite a string of reported sightings by besotted fans.

"The importance of it only struck me when I saw the Brit Awards," added Mr Morris, a lecturer at Neath College, West Glamorgan.

"I don't want to upset the family, but I'm not some wound-up fan - just someone who thinks they can help."

Edwards was 27 when he left London on 1 February 1995, to fly to America for TV interviews. He never arrived.

His car was found two weeks later near the Severn Bridge - a notorious suicide spot. His passport and drugs for depression were left in his Cardiff flat.

"It looks the best lead yet," said PC Chris Coleman, the officer in charge of the case, of the November sighting.

Richey's parents, Graham and Sherry, of Blackwood, Gwent, were told of he sighting.

A spokesman for the Manic Street Preachers said "it's just too painful for them and the family to talk about."