John Lawton, with wife Lynda, just before he went missing in Greece

The body of missing South Cheshire runner John Lawton has been found on a mountainside, his family confirmed today.

The discovery comes almost four months after John, from Alsager, disappeared while competing in the 35km Taygetos Challenge near Kalamata.

John’s wife Lynda and their son Steve flew out to Greece yesterday (August 15) to identify the body.

A Greek volunteer rescue organisation GAIA Alert reported today that the body is John’s.

Spokeswoman for GAIA Christina Constantios said: “He was found five and a half hours up climbing. It’s all done now, the family is waiting to take him home. Thank God it’s over.”

A family spokesperson posted on the FindJohnLawton page: “It is with great sadness that we need to let you know that John has been found. He was found high in the Greek mountains by two walkers on Tuesday.

“It looks as if he took a wrong route and has fallen. We are in Greece and are hoping to bring him home as soon as possible. We would like to thank everyone who has supported us in our search to find John.”

GAIA Alert has been at the forefront of the four-month search since he went missing on April 8.

They were joined by 15 members of Cheshire Search and Rescue (SAR) who went to Greece in June to help the search for the experienced 62-year-old runner.

Jo McClure, team leader for Cheshire SAR, said: “When we received the sad news that’s John’s body had been found after months of search effort from so many teams both from the UK and from Greece, it was that of numbness.

“I hope and prayed every dayJohn would be found, and we presumed after this length of time the outcome wouldn’t be good but still rightly or wrongly there was always a glimmer of hope.

“The search areas were difficult beyond words that could ever explain.  The teams never complained, they are an absolute credit to the SAR world.  I just hope Lynda and the Lawton family as a whole can finally start the grieving process in peace.”

Members of his running club the Sandbach Striders also joined family and friends during the search.

Appeals were made by family members on TV and in the media for Government assistance.

One Comment

  1. Silverdale Running Club. says:

    John you can now rest in peace,Silverdale Running Club & fellow runners, We would like to offer our censer condolences to Linda & Family members.

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