Where is Rachel? 18-year mystery may end in a few hours

Teenager Rachel Antonio was last seen alive on Anzac Day in 1998.
Teenager Rachel Antonio was last seen alive on Anzac Day in 1998.

THE family of teenager Rachel Antonio may get closure today when a coroner delivers his findings into the disappearance of the young woman who was last seen alive on Anzac Day in 1998.

Coroner David O'Connell will deliver his findings into the 18-year mystery in a few hours.

The coronial inquest started two years ago with 60 witnesses providing evidence.

Rachel's mum Cheryl Antonio last saw her daughter on April 25, 1998, when she dropped the young woman off to see a movie at a Bowen cinema.

Police and emergency services, using cadaver dogs,  searched areas around north Queensland multiple times but always came up empty handed.

Robert Hytch, then 26, was thought to be her boyfriend but he  consistently denied they were having sex.

Mr Hytch claimed he could not have killed her because his car broke down twice during a trip to the shops.

He was found guilty of her manslaughter in 1999, but he appealed and was acquitted at another  trial.

Mr Hytch's sister, Colleen Aberson, claimed Rachel ran away, but she was unable to prove this.

The inquest also examined Rachel's diary in which she wrote about wanting to hurt herself.

"I was so hurt, upset and angry I began trying to hurt myself," the diary said.

"Ending my life did cross my mind.

"It just seems like a way to get away from everything."

Mr O'Connell was tasked with determining whether or not Ms Antonio is dead and if so then when, where and how she died.

He will deliver his findings in Bowen at midday.

Topics:  crime rachel antonio

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