THE family of a missing mum who vanished after she got into a Ford Transit van are stuck living a “real life nightmare”, a friend said.
Katie Kenyon, 33, was last seen at 9.30am on Friday leaving a home in Burnley with a man before travelling in the silver van.
She has not been heard from since with police growing “increasingly concerned” over her whereabouts.
They are continuing to quiz a 50-year-old man on suspicion of kidnap who is “known to Katie”.
Officers confirmed the suspect travelled in the Transit with a woman matching the missing mum-of-two’s description to Bolton by Bowland near Gisburn Forest.
Police were yesterday seen beefing up the search for Katie and are now trawling the woodland for clues.
They also released a picture of the van, which has the number plate MT57 FLC.
Mountain rescue teams and a search dog unit have now joined the forest hunt for Katie.
The stepped-up search comes as a family friend said Katie’s loved ones were in a “real life nightmare” after she vanished.
She also pleaded for help to get “beautiful” Katie home to her children who are “missing her and love her”.
Her sister Sarah previously said: “It is now a waiting game, we have done everything we can, searched everywhere, contacted everyone.
“This is breaking us all and we are all so greatly appreciated for everyone’s help!”
Her other sister Jenny added: “Someone must have seen my sister. It’s very unusual and out of character for Katie is this!
“Nothing adds up and we are all concerned for her and her whereabouts.”
Worried neighbours have told how Katie’s disappearance is “completely out of character”.
‘OUT OF CHARACTER’
One said: “She’s a very family-oriented person and loves her two children and it’s completely out of character for her to disappear.
“Most of her time is spent with her kids and walking her dog. She’s into spiritual things too.
“She’s a lovely person and always says ‘hello’.
“I last saw her Wednesday morning when she was going to the shop.”
Christine Marshall, 62, described Katie as someone who “doted” on her children.
“She’s lived on this road for many, many years,” she said.
“It’s totally out of character for her to disappear like this.
“She’s always very friendly and I last saw on Thursday as she was going to her car.
“At first, I didn’t realise it was her who’d gone missing.
“For her, the kids come first and they must feel terrible at the moment.
“I just hope the police find her soon.”
Forensic officers were seen entering a home on Todmorden Road yesterday and removed what looked like a mobile phone in an evidence bag.
Police are also understood to have taken away a white car – believed to belong to Katie – that was parked on a nearby side road.
They are appealing for anyone who was in Bolton by Bowland may have seen Katie or the van to get in touch.
The mum has been described as white, aged 33, 5ft 9ins, with shoulder length strawberry blond/ginger highlighted hair.
She was last seen wearing a blue shirt/jacket and white vest top, black leggings and flip flops.
Det Chief Insp Al Davies, of the Force Major Investigation Team, said: “We continue to be extremely concerned about Katie and we have a large team who are working hard to try and find out what has happened to her.
“I am keeping an open mind about what has happened to her but my concern obviously grows as time goes by.
“I would appeal again to anyone who was in the Bolton by Bowland area on Friday and saw anything suspicious to get in touch, especially if they saw the silver van or Katie alone or in company. Please do come and speak to us even if you think the information you have may not be important.
“We continue to support Katie’s family and to keep them updated with any developments.”
Anyone with information can call police on 101 quoting log 800 of April 24th.