Arm Around My Shoulder, Val Nettles

In 1996, Val Nettles’s son Damien went missing on the Isle of Wight at aged 16. Val shares her experience almost 27 years later.

Arm Around My Shoulder

Missing People have been supporting Val and her family since Damien’s disappearance almost 27 years ago. Val is a member of the Missing People Charity Advisory Board, created in part to help the charity to plan their communications with the guidance of those with lived experience. She has become a staple of our Writer’s Group allowing her to put the past quarter-century in her own words.

Val recently spoke with us to share her most recent poem Arms Around My Shoulder: 


Missing appeal for Damien

Damien went missing on 2nd November 1996 from Cowes on the Isle of Wight. Aged just 16 at the time, Damien has now been missing for almost 27 years. His appeal, with links to share posters on social media, will remain on our site until he is found.

View Damien’s Appeal

To continue to support the families of people like Val, please donate below. Our charity provides counselling sessions, advice on dealing with media and police, and support groups to the loved ones of those who are missing.


Sign up to be a Digital Search Hero

We have launched a regular email so that you can be aware of new missing person appeals and share them far and wide! We are also calling on all Heroes to be the eyes and ears for Missing People on the ground. Your sighting of a missing person could make a difference in a crucial time.