Jay Slater's family joined in search by Essex politician who has climbed Mount Kilimanjaro

Slater/Yerrel/Last location of Slater

The family of Jay Slater is being helped in their search by Shane Yerrel, an Essex mayor with mountaineering experience

Facebook/Epping Forest DC/PA
Holly Bishop

By Holly Bishop

Published: 10/07/2024

- 07:48

Updated: 10/07/2024

- 07:59

Shane Yerrel, mayor of Waltham Abbey in Essex, flew out to Tenerife last week to join in with the search efforts

The family of missing teenager Jay Slater are being aided in their search by an Essex mayor with mountaineering experience, having previously climbed Kilimanjaro.

Shane Yerrel, 40, mayor of Waltham Abbey in Essex, has joined Slater’s heartbroken family to search the area where the 19-year-old was last seen.

Slater flew from Lancashire to the Canary Islands for a music festival but disappeared after he went to stay with people he met during a night out on June 16.

During his final call to his friend at 8am local time the following day, the 19-year-old said his phone had only one per cent battery, he was thirsty, and he did not know where he was.

Slater/Yerrel/Last location of Slater

The family of Jay Slater is being helped in their search by Shane Yerrell, an Essex mayor with mountaineering experience

Facebook/Epping Forest DC/PA

His last location showed he was in the Rural de Teno Park - an area popular among hikers. He has not been seen since.

The official search led by local police, which involved teams scouring a 2,000ft-deep ravine, was called off on June 30, nearly 14 days after Slater went missing.

Yerrel, who has previously climbed both Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Olympus, told The Mirror: “They're just living on hope. It's awful - they've got no answers. They don't know whether Jay is alive or dead.”

The 40-year-old travelled over 2,000 miles to reach Tenerife on Thursday after he offered his assistance to Slater’s family.


Masca Tenerife missing Jay Slater teenagerThe wild Masca region of Tenerife where Jay Slater went missing Reuters

Yerrel is no stranger to helping those in need, having raised almost £200,000 since 2011 for charity.

He reached out to the Slaters and explained that whilst he was no mountaineering expert, he was also no novice, and wanted to come out and help.

“We spent the whole day Saturday scaling the mountain and then the same thing again on Monday on a different route,” he said.

“They are doing everything to find him. They're not just out for an hour, they're out all day 9.30am until 6pm. We covered miles, but there's still a lot of ground to cover.”

Yerrel added: “I feel for all of them, his dad in particular. I'm a parent and my child is only a few years younger than Jay. The whole thing is heartbreaking not having any answers. They just don't know.”

Last known location of Jay SlaterSlater's last known locationGB News / Google Earth

This sentiment has been echoed by Warren Slater, 58, the missing teenager’s father. He said it would take “an army 10 years” to search the entire area.

Whilst his family, along with volunteers, are still scouring the region, the 58-year-old said that it will take much more manpower over a much longer period of time to find the teenager. He has urged Interpol and the British Police to step up.

Speaking to The Sun yesterday, he said: “As a family, we need to ask the British authorities to help. He's a British citizen. Get Interpol involved.

“At the moment, it’s just us. I haven’t got a team. We need a team to come over here and find out for us what the police are doing and what we need to do. Our hands are tied over here - we need experts.

“It’ll take an army 10 years to cover all this. I’d employ a team of Gurkhas."

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