Woman still missing after husband found dead
It's been a week since beloved grandma Ruth Ridley was reported missing by her distressed family, and fears only continue to grow about the 58-year-old's welfare.
Ms Ridley left her home in Port Macquarie, on the NSW Central Coast, on October 18 and travelled to Tumbarumba in the state's southwest to visit her estranged husband Gary and their children.
Ms Ridley had made the trip south to collect some of her belongings from her husband's house, also visiting her son Steven and his children.
Steven has been active on social media, replying to people on the Facebook appeals put out by NSW Police to hopefully bring Ms Ridley home safe.
"We all are holding out hope for mum to be found one way or another for some sort of closure," he said.
But in a horrific twist earlier this week, police confirmed they had found Ms Ridley's estranged husband Gary dead in a 4WD near the border of NSW and Victoria.
Police had previously issued an appeal to find Ms Ridley's vehicle - a dark blue Mitsubishi Pajero.
Officers found the caravan she was towing in Tumbarumba on October 30, the day her family contacted authorities.
And yesterday, police confirmed they had found the Pajero on October 29 with the body of 61-year-old Mr Ridley inside.
The Daily Telegraphreported the couple had taken out apprehended violence orders against each other before Ms Ridley moved hours away from her husband.
On October 27, Mr Ridley was caught on CCTV filling up his wife's car with petrol in Tumbarumba, and three days before that, Ms Ridley was seen at a supermarket in Albury on the NSW-Victorian border.
Police are now widening their appeal in the hope of finding Ms Ridley, asking for campers who stayed at Neil's Reserve near Walwa on the Murray River on October 26 and 27 to come forward.
They also want to speak to anyone who saw the Pajero towing the caravan between Walwa and Tumbarumba on October 27.
Ms Ridley is described as being caucasian in appearance, about 175cm tall, with a thin build, fair complexion and blonde hair.
Earlier, a crime scene relating to Mr Ridley's death was established by Victorian Police who are leading the investigation into the circumstances of his death.
A post-mortem examination will be conducted to determine the cause of death.
Ms Ridley's social media is filled with pictures of her children and grandchildren.
Her family has also been active on Facebook, calling for people to help share their appeals.
"We're very worried about Ruth Ridley, so too is her family, that's why our detectives are investigating this matter," Detective Inspector Adrian Telfer told reporters yesterday.
"Obviously her family are extremely concerned about her and that's what we're dealing with today."
Insp Telfer said the last sighting of Ms Ridley was at the supermarket in the Albury area, leaving days between her last known whereabouts and her husband's death.
"That is the last time we can confirm her whereabouts," he said.
"We are still appealing for anyone in the Riverina or wider community, including Victoria, if you have any information as to where she is or if you have seen her since the 24th of October to please come forward.
"What we do believe is that there was Ms Ridley's vehicle and a white caravan at Neil's Reserve, about seven kilometres east of the Walwa.
"We are appealing for anyone who was camping … to please come forward, we'd like to speak to you.
"Specifically, if anyone in that area has any dashcam footage to please come forward."