Family still looking for closure and justice

Today, August 11, marks the second-year anniversary since family members of Keith Russell Cooper aka ‘Fat Head’ reported him missing.

While 24 months have passed family and friends continue to hold faith that his, body will be recovered.”
While 12 months have passed family and friends continue to hold faith that his, “body will be found.”
Cooper’s father, veteran unionist Lloyd Cooper, who since his son was last seen on Sunday, August 9, 2015 agitated for justice in his son’s disappearance.

The senior Cooper passed away six months after reporting his “boy” missing.

His last wish was to find his son.

Family members believed the father died of a broken heart.

In an interview with this daily on his son’s birthday, November 28, 2015, prior to taking ill and being admitted to the Rand Memorial Hospital the older Cooper lamented, “Now instead of a joyous occasion – my wife Doris, his six children, the rest of the family and I are still searching for him.”

Six days after the younger Cooper was reported missing to police, a mother and daughter were charged in the Freeport Magistrate Court in connection with his disappearance.

On Monday, August 17 - Claudette Smith, 55, and Emajane Fitzgerald, 34, mother and daughter respectively, were officially charged with conspiracy to commit murder and murder, even though Cooper’s body has yet to be found.

Following the women’s arraignment, Cooper commended the police. “I am really happy about that and I must say that the detectives never dropped the ball, they picked it up from day one.”

Cooper noted that family and friends mounted a search for his son, since he disappeared.

“And let me just say we have been looking for him for almost two weeks now, by air and sea, and we are prepared to look until ... his body must be found,” said the father. “So, we will continue to look. We need to have his body, really, for his children...”

Cooper noted that his son left behind six children, “and he will never, ever see them graduate.
“So, it’s very important that we find him.”

Noting that the family, especially his wife, is hurting very badly, Cooper said, the family needs closure.
“We are hurting badly, because we don’t have closure. We don’t have his body and that’s most important.”

The grieving father, who noted that the family continues to search day and night for his missing son said the public has been very supportive.

“Every day they are there for us as we will continue go to look for him.”

Cooper thanked the police for their efforts, noting, “the law has taken care of their part, by putting two people before the courts “our thing now is finding my boy, which we will do.”

To date, the family continues to hold out hope that their loved one will be found.

“We want closure and justice,” Cooper’s daughter told this daily yesterday. “Even though my we have lost two of our loved ones, we need closure.”

Noting that the older Cooper died of a broken heart because of his son’s disappearance, Keith’s sister said their mother is still grieving and remains adamant on locating her son.

“We were able to bury our father, but my brother is still missing … we have no body, we have nothing to bring closure regarding his disappearance.”

She maintained that the family has had no updates as it relates to the case, a court date for those charged, and “we’ve heard nothing, so our family needs some closure. This is two years later … but with tomorrow being the day Keith was reported missing and the last time we saw him was that Sunday, it is still difficult to deal with. We are going to keep his name out there, because we want answers.”

She noted that family and friends remain hopeful that they will get closure and justice will be served.

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