William Tyrrell: Inside privileged life of foster mother, why she hates ...

William Tyrrell: Inside privileged life of foster mother, why she hates ...
William Tyrrell: Inside privileged life of foster mother, why she hates ...

As a wealthy professional from Sydney's north shore worth several million dollars, William Tyrrell's foster mum yearned for little in life.

But there was always something missing - a child and family of her own. 

In recent times, William Tyrrell's foster mother has been an enthusiastic tuckshop mother and cheerful presence at her daughter's primary school in an exclusive suburb.

The 56-year-old, who strenuously denies NSW Police allegations she was involved in the toddler's 2014 disappearance, also worked on the school's parents and citizens association.

She wanted William to grow up being 'socially aware, a good contributor to society and is happy and is fulfilling ... doing the things he wants to do'.

She and the boy's foster father are careful about children's nutrition and access to fast food.

But en route to Kendall they would allow William to eat at McDonald's, Heatherbrae, the halfway point, where the three-year-old was captured on CCTV the day before he disappeared. 

She and William's foster father have experience in real estate and property, and according to a police statement by William's late foster grandmother were assisting  in the sale of the Benaroon Drive, Kendall house on the fateful trip on which the boy vanished.

William Tyrrell's foster mother is a wealthy professional from Sydney’s north shore worth several million dollars who always longed to have children and raise a family

William Tyrrell's foster mother is a wealthy professional from Sydney’s north shore worth several million dollars who always longed to have children and raise a family

William instantly bonded with his foster father after being taken from his biological parents aged seven months and placed with the wealthy north shore couple

William instantly bonded with his foster father after being taken from his biological parents aged seven months and placed with the wealthy north shore couple

The foster mother's parents were respected, community-minded residents of the tiny town of Kendall and were involved in a heritage group on the NSW Mid North Coast.

William's foster mother is also regarded as a solid contributor to her north shore community. 

They sold the five-bedroom house with a swimming pool where William had lived  from early 2012 until his disappearance for more than $4million last year.

The couple have since bought a four-bedroom low rise worth more than $2million. 

More than a decade ago when the couple did not have children of their own, they embarked on the lengthy process of being approved as foster carers.

William's foster mother does not like the Spider-man suit image of William which has become synonymous with his case, saying it is a 'bittersweet' reminder of the lost boy

William's foster mother does not like the Spider-man suit image of William which has become synonymous with his case, saying it is a 'bittersweet' reminder of the lost boy

The foster parents were careful about William's nutrition, but allowed him (above) a fast food stop at McDonald's at the halfway point en route to Kendall the day before he vanished

The foster parents were careful about William's nutrition, but allowed him (above) a fast food stop at McDonald's at the halfway point en route to Kendall the day before he vanished

The foster mother said caring for kids in need of a safe and loving home was 'just something we've always wanted to do'.

The parents went through a working with children check, interviews with social workers about why they wanted to foster a child, and an examination of their capacity to keep a child safe.

They were questioned about their understanding of abuse and neglect, their response to dealing with children's behaviour resulting from neglect, and their willingness to protect a child's identity and culture.

The foster parents successfully cleared all those hurdles and in 2011 were approved as carers of children on short term orders.

But they wanted to foster children on long term orders, which would mean they would act as the parents of children in the custody of the Minister for the former Department of Family and Community Services (FACS). 

They fostered a couple of children short term before being granted seven-month-old William Tyrrell in 2012.

William bonded with his foster father almost immediately, was slower to take to his foster mother but not long before he vanished had started calling her 'Mum'.

The foster mother said that taking in children as foster parents was something she and the foster father had always wanted to do

The foster mother said that taking in children as foster parents was something she and the foster father had always wanted to do

The foster father (above) and his wife wanted William to grow up to be socially responsible and a happy person

The foster father (above) and his wife wanted William to grow up to be socially responsible and a happy person 

He was a boisterous and energetic child and his sometimes unruly behaviour with other children at child care became of concern the foster mother. 

But she later said she and the foster father had been 'incredibly fortunate to have William come into out lives'. 

'As foster carers you look after the children that you're asked to look after, loving the children for who they are,' she told the 'Walking for William' podcast. 

'You don't make choices about who you love and who you don't love. With children they're just so innocent.

'We took our role very seriously to provide a loving caring supportive home for him. and do the best thing by him that we could possibly do.'

William was boisterous and 'jumping out of his skin' on the morning that he disappeared but he was also known to be a cautious child who didn't venture far

William was boisterous and 'jumping out of his skin' on the morning that he disappeared but he was also known to be a cautious child who didn't venture far

The foster mother purchased a camera and began compiling annual 'photo books of what we do as a family every year'.

The photo of William in his Spider-Man suit on his foster grandmother's Kendall deck that would become a proof-of-life image for police was just one of many photos intended for the foster parents' 2014 family photo book.

On that September 12 morning, a Friday, the foster mother had encouraged William and his sister to hand draw messages to leave on their late grandfather's grave.

The foster grandfather, who had been born in the Netherlands and was called 'Opa' by William, died aged 84 in February 2014.

The foster mother had intended taking family photos of William placing a drawing on Opa's grave, which is in Kendall cemetery on a ridge above the Benaroon Drive house. 

The foster mother now says she's not fond of the photo of William in the Spider-Man suit.

The Benaroon Drive house from which William vanished in 2014 (above) has been the subject of the latest high intensity search by police for traces of the missing toddler

The Benaroon Drive house from which William vanished in 2014 (above) has been the subject of the latest high intensity search by police for traces of the missing toddler

Photos of William playing on his foster grandmother's deck were meant for a family photo book, but ended up as proof of life images examined by police

Photos of William playing on his foster grandmother's deck were meant for a family photo book, but ended up as proof of life images examined by police

'It's bittersweet,' she told 'Where's William Tyrrell'. 

'I actually don't like looking at that photo.'

The foster father said his reactions to the image were 'mixed ... seeing his face, the joy of play but also it also means I feel like I have lost ... I feel like he's lost the opportunity for everything'. 

The foster mother described the connection between William and his foster father as 'incredibly special'. 

'I'm not saying this to detract from the relationship he had with his biological parents,' she said, 'because I think that's incredibly precious and special.

'But (it was ) .. just fabulous to watch'. 

William's biological parents had been seeing him every month, but as he became a long term placement that access was reduced to bimonthly.

The birth mother said in a police statement she had been told that the foster mother and her husband were not comfortable meeting her and the birth father.

On one contact visit supervised by Ben Attwood from the Salvation Army, the birth and foster mother passed each other, but they never met.

The birth mother said in her police statement that she worried about William being 'a bit too skinny'.

William Tyrrell's birth mother (above) last saw her son on an access visit in August 2014 when she noticed he was 'more affectionate than usual' and cuddled her rather than racing around

William Tyrrell's birth mother (above) last saw her son on an access visit in August 2014 when she noticed he was 'more affectionate than usual' and cuddled her rather than racing around

William's birth father (above) last saw his son at the Chipmunks Playland at the Macquarie CVentre in North Sydney in August 2014

William's birth father (above) last saw his son at the Chipmunks Playland at the Macquarie CVentre in North Sydney in August 2014

'I don't want to come across as if I'm blaming them or being mean, but it's just been really hard,' she said

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