On 17 July 2014, Richard Mayne was upstairs in his bedroom, stuffing clothes into a suitcase. It was 1am. A few hours later, he was due to set off on a trip around the world. Aged 20, Richard was a second-year student at Leeds University. He was studying maths and finance. His year abroad was to be spent in the agreeable, scorching surroundings of the University of Western Australia in Perth. Richard was sporty, charismatic, a talented rugby player. And the witty mid-point of a social situation. He was a lousy packer, though. “He wasn’t very organised. It’s almost as if he didn’t want to go,” his mum Liz says. “Australia was going to be hot and he’d packed a tuxedo. He bought himself a new surf suit. His rugby boots went on top. He was going to rugby training straight from the plane.” At 4am, Liz drove Richard from their home in Leicester to Birmingham airport. From there he was catching an early flight to Amsterdam and a long-haul connection on to Kuala Lumpur. At check-in, Liz says she had a “bit of an argument” with her son, who insisted on taking his laptop with him for the flight… Read full this story
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