THE family of a Durham Lead man missing in the outback for almost three weeks have made a plea for him to return home safely.
David Lansdown, 51, has not been seen since the early hours of Christmas Eve, when he left the Desert Rose Inn in Alice Springs.
The father of five had embarked on a solo journey to the outback on December 19, which his daughter Sharayah said was out of character for him.
He would often go on day trips alone but his family became increasingly concerned when he sent them each a text message on December 22 saying how much he loved them and that he was sorry.
The much-loved father, who suffers depression, left the Alice Springs hotel about 1am on December 24 and has not been heard of or seen since.
His credit cards have not been used and his phone has been turned off.
Eldest daughter Sharayah, 21, said it had been an extremely stressful time for the family, not knowing the whereabouts of their father over the Christmas and New Year break.
“It’s been a horrible time for us and we just want to have him home,” she said.
“It was not unusual for him to go on a day trip by himself but nothing like this. He loves being outdoors but I don’t know how he would go camping in the outback in these conditions.”
Investigators have been told he purchased supplies from a local supermarket and has been travelling in a white 1995 Mazda Bravo.
Mr Lansdown is described as being around 185cm tall with a solid build, with black and grey hair and a beard.
“We’re just hoping someone has seen him and can tell us something or that he might even get this messsage and realise how much we miss him,” Sharayah said.
“We just hope he is still out there and will come home.”
Mr Lansdown and his wife Cheryl have five children aged 23, 21, 16, 13 and 11.
Anyone who sees Mr Lansdown or has any information about his whereabouts is urged to call triple zero immediately.
For help call Lifeline 131114