“His name is known everywhere. That image of him, The ginger head on him, like. He wasn’t actually that ginger at all, you know.” It’s the one time the two Deely siblings, Michele and Mark, who were interviewed on the Ray D’Arcy show on Saturday night, allow themselves to laugh.
Their younger brother, Trevor, will be missing 17 years this December, and they were appearing on the show to again appeal for information about him. No trace of Trevor Deely has been found since he walked out of shot at 4.14am from a CCTV camera at the Bank of Ireland on Haddington Road, on the night of 8th December 2000.
The image that Mark Deely is referring to is the one that was on his red-haired brother's Missing poster, which for a long time, was visible all over Dublin.
The Deelys were also talking publicly together about the impact on their family of the intensive Garda search that took place for Trevor on a site at Chapelizod for six weeks in August and September of this year.
“Why did the gardaí start searching there?” D’Arcy asked.
“Somebody came forward with information,” Michele said, describing the dig as “a pretty horrendous experience to go through for us as a family. A dig has a very sinister connotation”
She explained, but not in detail, the nature of the information the Gardai had received prior to deciding to dig at the Chapelizod site.
“Somebody did come forward with some information that the Gardai felt there was enough credibility for them to pursue. So they undertook an incredibly extensive search of that area, and it was a big area, and it was difficult for them to search. It went on for what felt like infinity. It was six weeks, so it was a long search. But we got to the end of it - and nothing.”
The siblings sat together stoically on the set's jolly pink sofa, focused on the awful task of being interviewed yet again about their missing brother. "We do this because we want to find Trevor. We do need to find Trevor, and we'd like some peace in that regard," Michele Deely said.
They both talked about their younger brother in the present tense. “Trevor isn’t a messer,” Mark insisted at one point.
“When does hope become desperation?” D’Arcy asked.
“There is still hope,” Mark Deely said, talking about the theories that have been offered over time as to what may have happened Trevor. “There is nothing we haven’t heard. We’ve heard everything. You can’t tell us a story about Trevor we haven’t heard. I think the easy attitude is to say he’s gone, but he deserves more than this.”
Michele Deely revealed she keeps watching the CCTV footage of Trevor leaving his office, where he had gone to get an umbrella on the way home from his office party. “My head hurts these days,” she says. “I keep watching that CCTV footage and just watching him, and it is so innocent. He’s zipping up his coat, he’s got his umbrella, he’s had a brilliant night out, and off he goes, and he just vanishes.”
She described the family as being in a “kind of groundhog day”, where, almost two decades later, there are still no answers as to where her brother vanished to that wet night, and what happened him. “He is just frozen in time for us, I guess.”
“I want to move him away from Haddington Road. It is too long to be stuck in the one place, Mark Deely said. “I want to know what happened. Something happened. He’s missing. So something happened and I want to know what happened, and for that we need the help of the guards.
"My biggest fear – what I speculate about – is what if this review, this whole investigation ends up with nothing. Where are we left then?" he said, looking straight to camera, and into the living rooms of Ireland, where someone, somewhere, may just know something that could help solve this mystery, and one family's enduring heartbreak."
If anyone has any information about Trevor Deely, or any missing person, please contact crimestoppers.ie 1800 25 00 25, or any Garda Station.