Madeleine McCann disappeared 12 years ago while she was on holiday in the Algarve with her parents Kate and Gerry McCann and siblings Sean and Amelie. A highly-anticipated Netflix series, “The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann” premiered today, however the eight-part documentary was not supported by the McCann family. Madeleine’s mother Kate wrote her own account in 2011, titled “Madeleine: Our daughter’s disappearance and the continuing search for her”.
In the book, Kate reveals Madeleine’s words the day before her disappearance that she continues to be “haunted” by.
Kate writes how Madeleine asked her: “Why didn’t you come when Sean and I cried last night?”
She continues: “We were puzzled. Did she mean when they were having their bath? Or just after they’d gone to bed?
“It certainly hadn’t been in the early hours, because I’d been in the room with them, even closer than usual.”
Kate had been in the children’s room the night before, she explains, as she had take the “unprecedented” decision to sleep apart from her husband.
Kate continues: “Madeleine didn’t answer or elaborate.
“Gerry and I were disconcerted. Could Madeleine and Sean have woken up while we were at dinner? If so, it was worrying, obviously, but it didn’t seem very probable.”
She explains the system of checking on the children every 30 minutes that the family had established while they were out nearby at dinner, however she adds that the children waking up and crying undetected during the regular checking routine “wasn’t impossible, but it seemed improbable”.
Kate continues: “Not for a moment did we think there might be some sinister reason for this occurrence, if indeed anything had occurred.
“If only foresight came as early to us as hindsight.
“Within hours, the explanation for this would seem hugely important, and so haunted have I been ever since by Madeleine’s words that morning that I’ve continued to blame myself for not sitting down and making completely certain there was no more information I could draw out of her.
“This could have been my one chance to prevent what was about to happen, and I blew it.
“There was absolutely nothing to give me any reason for suspicion and we can all be clever after the event.
“But it is my belief there was somebody either in or trying to get into the children’s bedroom that night, and that is what disturbed them.”
Today’s Netflix documentary also reports the words from Madeleine that breakfast-time, on the Thursday, before her disappearance on the Friday night.
Bestselling authors Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan, who published their own account of the McCann case, comment: “What had made her and Sean cry?
“If an abductor came, had he been there the previous night, been disturbed maybe, or not gone through with his crime?”
In her book, Kate also explains the system of “child-checking” that the McCanns and their group of friends had decided on, as they dined in the resort’s tapas restaurant close by.
She says: “We now bitterly regret it and will do so until the end of our days.”