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'My heart is broken': Mother of missing British backpacker pens poem 30 years after son's disappearance

The mother of a British backpacker who disappeared in B.C. 30 years ago has penned a poem pleading for information about the whereabouts of her son's remains.

Denise Allan, mother of Charles Horvath, has been searching for closure since 1989.

The 20-year-old went missing in the spring of that year after last being seen cashing a cheque at the Orchard Park Royal Bank in Kelowna on May 26.

He was registered at the Tiny Town Campground in Kelowna.

<who> Photo credit: RCMP

Horvath was three weeks into a backpacking trip across Canada.

His mother has been visiting Kelowna for years in the hope of finding her son’s body so she can bury it.

“This year Charles’s mother, who has never given up hope that someone will come forward with answers to her beloved son’s disappearance, has written an emotional poem,” Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said.

“Denise shared this piece of poetry with our investigators, who continue to search for clues and has asked the RCMP to share her literary work with the media and in turn the public.”

Her poem, titled 30 Years, is reproduced below:

Beautiful Charles, loving son of mine...

30-years of searching, only never to find.

Many times I've crossed the ocean...

the waters ever so blue, always praying a tip, will lead to finding you.

My heart is broken, so filled with sorrow...

I struggle each day, always hoping tomorrow.

You were only 20, a very good man,

living without you... I do the best I can.

After 30-years of searching, I've come to regret...

It's your earthly body, I have to find yet.

Begging all who know wherever you lay,

please send a lead... I so often pray.

My Charles, sweet Charles... my only son.

I will continue my search, until my earth's work is done.

For whoever knows, what happened to you...

Please speak up now, it's long overdue.

All I want is my child, to have and to bury,

here with his family, in a quaint cemetery.

Please bring me answers, to where Charles'll be found,

I'll dig myself... I'll turn up the ground.

Nobody needs to know, except you and me...

Please send me a tip, and your heart'll be free.

If you know anything about what happened to Charles Horvath, call Sgt. Paul Gosling of the Kelowna Serious Crime Unit at (250) 762-3300.

If you want to remain anonymous, you can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, or leave an online tip at

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