Workington mum faces anxious wait during Kenya siege
Last updated at 12:36, Friday, 27 September 2013
A Workington mother spent four anxious days waiting to find out whether her soldier son had been caught up in Kenya’s terrorist attack.
Matthew Richardson, 22, a sapper with the Royal Engineers, is involved in a community construction project near Nairobi where Islamic militants laid siege to a shopping centre.
More than 70 people were killed in the attack, including security personnel, militants and civilians. The figure is expected to rise.
Matthew’s mother and stepfather, Lesley and Tony Jackson, had not heard from Matthew since the siege began.
They eventually received a text message from Matthew on Wednesday confirming that he was safe.
They said the British base where he is stationed had been on standby in case soldiers were needed to help neutralise the terrorist threat.
Mrs Jackson, 50, said: “We were getting concerned that he hadn’t been in touch with us. We had sent him text messages and tried to contact him on Facebook but had no reply.
“It was nerve-wracking. We didn’t know what to think.
“He could have been there as a visitor to the shopping centre, that was going through our minds. But we didn’t know anything, just what we were watching on TV.”
Mr Jackson, 55, added: “We were nervous. We didn’t know what had happened. We were hoping he wasn’t mixed up in it. Four days of not knowing felt like eight days.”
Matthew is stationed near Nanyuki in the Rift Valley, less than three hours from the capital, where he is involved in a community construction project.
He is due to return to the UK in November.
Mrs Jackson’s other son Jamie, 24, is a serving lance corporal with REME.
Eleven people have been arrested in connection with the Kenya terror attack.
First published at 12:25, Friday, 27 September 2013
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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