Susan Caruana, the grandmother of Alex Batty who went missing for six years, has shared the harrowing details of her final phone call with him before his disappearance. Alex, who was only 11 at the time, had gone on a trip to Spain and never returned. Over the years, Caruana was tormented by uncertainty, not knowing if Alex was alive or dead.
In her last conversation with Alex, she overheard his mother saying, “we’re getting rid of the phones now,” which filled her with dread, fearing she might never see him again. The teenager, now 17 and living with his grandmother in Oldham, has recently returned from living an “alternative” lifestyle abroad. His mother, Melanie Batty, is described as “anti-government, anti-vax,” and was opposed to what she termed “becoming a slave to the system.”
Alex’s disappearance led to a criminal investigation by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) into his alleged abduction. He finally returned to the UK after being found by a student near Toulouse, France. Despite not attending school during his time away, Alex said reading, particularly the Harry Potter series, was his main pastime due to limited Wi-Fi access.
Reflecting on his ordeal, Alex expressed regret over missing out on a proper education, with his only formal qualifications being his primary school SATs results. The emotional reunion with his grandmother was marked by a “massive hug,” as Alex recounted the difficulties of his unusual journey.”