Nothing prepares you for the disappearance of a child
A MAN whose son vanished in Queensland in bizarre circumstances is desperate to hear just three words - "I'm OK dad".
Newcastle's Jayden Penno-Tompsett disappeared near a lonely stretch of highway about 1400km north of Brisbane on December 31.
The free-spirited 22-year-old was driving to Cairns for a New Year's Eve bash with friend Lucas Tattersall.
But during a drug-fuelled argument the pair purportedly parted ways just outside Charters Towers.
Jayden hasn't been seen since.
On the eve of Missing Persons Week Brett Tompsett said nothing can prepare you for the disappearance of a child.
"It never goes away, never leaves you," he told The Courier-Mail.
"I cry a lot, but privately. There is nothing that can prepare you for this.
"I just want to hear the three words - "I'm OK dad".
Seared into his memory is their last conversation just days before Jayden's disappearance.
"I spoke to him at Christmas time and it was just the usual 'how's life, what are you up to' stuff. We are good mates as well as father and son," he said.
"He was really excited about the trip."
The trip would become shrouded in mystery when Lucas Tattersall arrived in Cairns alone.
In an exclusive interview Mr Tattersall has told The Courier-Mail that Jayden left their car to "clear his head" after an argument.
When he failed to return he said he searched the remote surrounds for hours before making his way to Cairns.
He claim friends told him not to contact police because Jayden had an outstanding arrest warrant in NSW.
Mr Tompsett believes there are people who could have vital information on Jayden's whereabouts.
"To somebody who knows something - please tell the police so we can know he is OK. There are a lot of people in agony because we all love him," he said.
He described Jayden as a "fun loving young man" with a "great spirit".
"We are broken without you Jayden, a piece of us is missing, we love you so, so much."
IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION ON THE WHEREABOUTS OF JAYDEN PENNO-TOMPSETT, PHONE THE MISSING PERSONS HOTLINE ON 1800 000 634