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Village shock after father disappears while diving off Egypt coast

By Western Gazette - South Somerset  |  Posted: November 08, 2012

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A South Somerset community was in shock this week after one of its residents went missing while scuba diving off the coast of an Egyptian resort.

Steve Cracknell of North Cadbury, failed to surface during a routine diving lesson near Sharm el-Sheikh more than a week ago, according to national media reports.

It is understood that the 46-year-old was on a family holiday with his wife and their two daughters. He went missing after swimming in the White Knight dive site, a relatively shallow canyon near the popular resort.

Locals are reported to have been making daily searches for the pharmaceuticals executive and his scuba diving instructor, who also remains missing.

The instructor is said to be a veteran diver who has lived in Sharm el-Sheikh for years.

It is understood that Mr Cracknell’s family have now returned to North Cadbury.

As the news filtered through to villagers this week, people in North Cadbury were left stunned by the news and were keen to offer support and best wishes to Mr Cracknell’s family.

Rector for the North Cadbury and Yarlington parish, the Rev Tristram Rae Smith, said: “The village is in shock at the news and we want to wish the family our deepest sympathies.

“Our thoughts are with them at this time.”

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office this week confirmed a British national remained missing.

A spokesperson said: “We are liaising with the local authorities and providing consular assistance to the family.”

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