Richard Cole, age 30, resident of Dursley in Gloucestershire, England, went missing after going to various bars located in the Thorbeckeplein area on January 25, 2016. Authorities have recovered the body of a British male from an Amsterdam canal.
Richard Cole had been known by family and friends to be "an experienced traveler", and at that time he was travelling from Copenhagen to Assen via the Dutch city. Unfortunately, he went missing after going to various bars around the area of Thorbeckeplein, Amsterdam at approximately 2 a.m. (UK timezone) on the 25th of January. He was believed to be drinking with strangers prior to his disappearance.
The last person Richard contacted was his girlfriend in Las Vegas, Alicia Marie. Alicia told BBC, "He had been out with some people he had just met, which is common for Richard as he is very friendly. I just said to be careful, please go home, get a cab. We got off the phone and I texted him a picture of his address to show his cab but it never went through."
Alicia tried to contact him through Facetime and text messages, but received no response. "I imagine that he turned off his phone or his phone died. Throughout the night, when I was at work, I tried to Facetime him and I tried to text him, but nothing went through."
Richard's distressed family, and the police in Gloucestershire and Netherlands, appealed for any information that could help track his whereabouts.
Lee Thornhill, his brother, traveled to Amsterdam to visit bars he may have gone into and he also gave out flyers to help with the search. Debbie Thornhill, his mother, set up a Facebook page named "Help us find Richard Cole".
On February 1, Dutch police reported that officers had found a man's dead body in the Herengracht canal in Amsterdam, formally identified to be Richard's by his brother Lee. Police stated, "His family has been informed. It is still unclear how he ended up in the water."
Authorities said that they will continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding his death and the possibilities of how he ended up in the water.
It all started when a tracking dog acted "restless" at the canal site and so a search took place on the evening of February 1. Divers soon were able to find Richard's lifeless body.
The grieving family is now asking that the media respect their privacy at this difficult time.
Debbie previously wrote on the Facebook page she made for her son, "Richard is a very special person not only to his family but to all his friends. Life would just not be the same without him."
Missing Poker Player Richard Cole's Body found in Amsterdam Canal