Mother of FNQ woman who died in US speaks out
MEGHAN Godfrey loved her family, her home in the Far North and the great outdoors.
The 27-year-old, who lived with her dad Les on a rural property near Yungaburra, had a passion for travel, gardening and animals, a beautiful singing voice and a gentle, quiet nature.
A few weeks ago on a whim the former Yungaburra State School student booked a trip to Washington DC, a place she had spoken to her family about wanting to visit.
Soon after she lost contact with them and mum Janelle Moncrieff became so concerned she booked a flight to go and find her.
She was preparing to depart when she got an email from Meghan saying she was ready to come home.
"I was over the moon when I received an email from Meghan on July 12," Mrs Moncrieff said, speaking to the Cairns Post from the US.
"She was saying she was safe and fine, but was in trouble at the moment."
She said she replied back immediately, telling her she would cancel her own flight and book a return trip for Meghan but that email was never read and it was the last time her family heard from her.
The details of what happened next remained somewhat sketchy.
It was believed she was robbed and lost her money and all her possessions, forcing her to live on the streets.
Mrs Moncrieff flew over and spent a week walking the streets of the US capital desperate to find her.
Despite her best efforts, along with local authorities and women's outreach organisation HER Resiliency Centre, she could not be found.
Tragically her body was found on July 16 at a local university.
"She must have been so lost and didn't know where to go," Mrs Moncrieff said.
"As a mum you don't want this to happen."
Backed by public donations, Mrs Moncrieff was now working to bring her body home with her partner Karl set to fly over this week to help.
She said Meghan's father Les and sister Bridgette had wanted to fly over during the search, but were unable to.
She and Karl hoped to leave by Sunday and bring her body home to the Tablelands.
"She is just the most gentle, caring person," she said.
"She is a country girl, she loved it. She loves animals, gardening, the outdoors.
"She spent a fair bit of time on the Tablelands living with her father and working on the farm.
"She does love travel and loves adventure. She was always at a different place.
"Meg is a very gentle, no fuss type of a girl.
"We're a very close family, Meghan loves her family very much."
She said she was not aware that Meghan had ever suffered with mental health illness.
Financial donations have poured in through a GoFundMe page set up by HER's Ami Angell and had reached well over $10,000 late yesterday which will be used for the family's travel costs and to repatriate Meghan's body.
Mrs Moncrieff said she was overwhelmed by all the support.
She was currently staying with a woman and her daughter in DC who reached out wanting to assist, had an Australian friend with her who was on holidays in the US at the time and also praised the efforts of Ms Angell and other Union Station staff.
"Everyone's kindness has helped me tremendously," she said.
"I can't believe how wonderful it has been.
"People are just beautiful."
She said they would hold the funeral in the Yungaburra or Atherton area after their return.
Australians in crisis can seek support from Lifeline on 13 11 14.