Anxious wait for British families

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The Independent Online

Two British women are feared dead in the aeroplane tragedy at Taipei. Margaret Blanche Rabley and Jennifer Loo, who are known to have been booked on the flight, are both missing.

Two British women are feared dead in the aeroplane tragedy at Taipei. Margaret Blanche Rabley and Jennifer Loo, who are known to have been booked on the flight, are both missing.

Mrs Rabley, 62, was travelling back home to Florida after visiting her new-born granddaughter, her family said yesterday. Miss Loo, 27, was returning home to Hong Kong.

The Foreign Office said last night that both women remain unaccounted for. "There is nothing more we can say at this stage," a spokesman said.

It is likely to take several days to identify bodies in the aircraft. Those who died were caught in the inferno that severely damaged parts of the Boeing 747 after the crash. Forensic pathologists will have to use dental and other medical records to identify individual bodies.

Mrs Rabley, 61, who was originally from Risca near Newport in South Wales, had spent the last few weeks with her daughter Ann, 37, who is based in Singapore with her husband and two-year-old son.

Mrs Rabley's brother-in-law, Dr Martin Rabley, 58, said the family was "anxiously" awaiting news.

Dr Rabley, a chiropractor, said from his home in Southampton that Mrs Rabley's husband, John, 60, was flying to Taipei with one of his sons, Peter.

"He is very distressed and doesn't know how he is going to get on," Dr Rabley said. "Obviously it's anxious for us at this point in time and one just doesn't want to think the worst but it may have happened."

Mrs Rabley gained a degree in zoology at Reading University and taught in Miami before retiring and moving to Ladylake near Orlando, Florida.

She married her husband in the early 1960s, and the couple had three children, Ann, Peter and Christopher, Dr Rabley said.

John Rabley, who was originally from Southampton, had retired from Barclays Bank. The family had lived all over the world, including Singapore, New York, the Bahamas and Miami since leaving Britain about 30 years ago.

"She's a very capable lady and taught zoology and botany for quite a long time. She is a very bright lady and enjoyed life," Mr Rabley said.

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