THE death of one of the Old Town’s most popular residents remains shrouded in mystery.
Norman Race, 62, of George Street, disappeared in August last year and his remains were discovered in January by a dog walker outside Winchester, Hampshire.
But at an inquest held on Wednesday (October 30), coroner Grahame Short recorded an open verdict into Mr Race’s death.
After the hearing Tina Gibbins, his niece, said: “There are still a lot of unanswered questions that we’ll never get the answer to.
“A dog walker found Norman but because he had been there for some time there was not enough evidence to say what happened. When he was last seen he had his bike and trailer with him. But this wasn’t by him when he was found.”
Mr Race was last spotted speaking to a friend on August 6, 2012 on Bexhill seafront, when he said he was camping up north’.
His family reported him missing on September 4. But his body was discovered in woods near Winchester four months later. Formal identification took several weeks before a DNA match was made.
Mr Race worked as a boatman for the fishermen for several years in the Old Town and was also heavily involved with the RNLI. He also took part in many Old Town events, such as the beach concert, the pram race, and Pirate Day
In June 2012 Mr Race took part in the Three Peaks Challenge over three days with his niece to help raise money for Charity for Kids, a group that collects funds to help sick children across 1066 Country.
Tina added: “Norman was a lovely, well-liked-guy and is sadly missed.”