'Surreal' parallels between Michael Mosley disappearance and 2019 case

By John Mercury June 8, 2024

The son of a man who went missing on a Greek island in 2019 has urged Michael Mosley’s family not to give up their search.

The TV doctor disappeared on Wednesday while on holiday on the Greek island of Symi after going for a walk from Saint Nikolas Beach, with divers, police, firefighters and sniffer dogs all deployed in the search for him.

CCTV images have emerged showing Mr Mosley half an hour after he left the beach and then vanished.

Dr Michael Mosley
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Michael Mosley went missing on Wednesday

Michael Mosley CCTV images
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A CCTV image of Mr Mosley

The case has parallels to that of John Tossell, a 78-year-old man from Bridgend who went missing on the Greek island of Zakynthos five years ago this month.

Mr Tossell was on the third day of his holiday with his partner, Gillian, when he disappeared after going on a walk to visit a monastery on Mount Skopos.

When he did not return, a search began for Mr Tossell, who was described by his son as a “fit man” and more than able to make the trip up the mountain without a struggle.

The last confirmed sighting was of him on CCTV passing a hotel and heading out of town towards Vassilikos.

When the local authorities called off the search after five days, Mr Tossell’s daughter Katy launched a fundraising campaign, using the £7,000 it made to bring the Western Beacons Mountain Rescue team to the island to keep searching.

The group found no sign of Mr Tossell, with his family no closer to solving the mystery of his disappearance five years on.

This week’s news about Mr Mosley, known for appearing on programmes like This Morning and The One Show, has sparked fresh memories for Mr Tossell’s family, not least due to the similarity between the two cases.

Gary Tossell
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John Tossell’s son Gary

‘Same story but a different person’

“When I read the story it’s like a cut and paste of my father,” Mr Tossell’s son Gary told Sky News.

“He went for a walk and he vanished into thin air. As a family we got together and said this is surreal. It’s the same story but a different person.”

He added: “I wish nothing but love to the Mosley family as I know exactly what they’re going through and it must be awful for them out there at the minute. I want to tell them not to give up.”

Read more:
What we know about Michael Mosley’s last known movements

Mr Tossell’s family have refused to end their search but suspect that either foul play or potential third-party involvement mean they’ll never get the answers they desire.

“My dad was wearing a royal blue T-shirt and the police drove up the path with their blue lights flashing. They never got out of the car,” added his son.

“They knocked it on the head at 11pm and the next day they just went out walking, it was like a walk in the park for them. There was no intensity to their efforts.

“They said that there was a team coming from Athens with dogs and specialists but for some reason that got turned off at the last minute.

“Five days later they stopped searching entirely. Five days only. They said he must have left the island but when he left the hotel he had 10 euros and a bottle of water – you can’t get far with that.”

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He added: “We all think as a family that foul play must have been involved. Whether it’s a mugging gone wrong or a car accident and he’s been removed. Human beings don’t just vanish.”

Mr Tossell’s disappearance was picked up by an investigative crime journalist with her own TV show in Greece that looks to solve cases of missing people.

Fos sto Tounel, which translates as Light in the Tunnel, attempted to piece together the final movements that Mr Tossell made in the hope of uncovering new information, though the show failed to do so.

The Tossell family pushed for a criminal probe into the Welshman’s disappearance and have urged anyone who went on holiday to Zakynthos in June 2019 to check if Mr Tossell appeared in the background of any holiday pictures.

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