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Body of Missing TV Doctor Michael Mosley Found. What We Know So Far

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Updated: | Originally published:

Michael Mosley, a British TV doctor who went missing on the Greek island of Symi, was found dead on Sunday, four days after he disappeared while on vacation.  

A post-mortem examination of his body concluded that he had died of natural causes, and there were no injuries on his body that could have caused his death, according to the BBC. The doctor died the day he went missing, at around 4:00 PM local time, per the BBC. 

Mosley was known for his appearances on U.K. programs such as This Morning and The One Show. The 67-year-old was a regular columnist in the Daily Mail and presented several shows on diet and exercise, including the Michael Mosley: Who Made Britain Fat? documentary. He was also part of the BBC series Trust Me, I'm A Doctor.

He disappeared on Wednesday at around 1:30 p.m. local time, when he went to take a walk from Saint Nikolas beach on the island, leaving his wife and friends. At 3 p.m., his wife, fellow doctor Clare Bailey Mosley, noticed he had still not returned to the place they were staying, per Sky News. By 7:30 p.m., she raised the issue with the police, and Greek authorities began to search for him. Mosley did not have his cell phone with him, since it was found in the vacation residence, a police spokesperson is quoted as telling the BBC.

CCTV footage from a local restaurant showed Mosley walking through the village of Pedi at around 1:52 p.m., less than 30 minutes after he left his wife and friends. He was carrying an umbrella, seemingly to protect himself from the sun.

Weather conditions were very hot when Mosley had left. The National Observatory of Athens reported temperatures of over 100°F on Wednesday.

The search efforts grew in size in the days after his disappearance. By Friday morning, a mix of 25 volunteers, police officers, and firefighters were reportedly working to find Mosley. Divers, drones, and sniffer dogs had also been recruited to help with the search on and above the island, and its surrounding waters.

Per Sky News, at 6 a.m. on Saturday morning, the search for Mosley resumed once more, with groups "scouring a 6.5km radius over a mountainous area." Mosley's four adult children, who arrived on the Greek island Friday night, joined the search efforts, made up of the authorities and volunteers.

Michael Mosley missing
Volunteers pictured here on Saturday, June 8, 2024, in Symi, Greece, where a search and rescue operation continues for TV doctor Michael Mosley after he went missing while on holiday. Yui Mok—Getty Images

Mosley’s body was found when a boat carrying the island’s mayor, Lefteris Papakalodoukas, and some journalists spotted him lying face-up next to a fence about 66 feet above Agia Marina beach, Papakalodoukas told the Associated Press

Tributes have come pouring in from Mosley’s colleagues and fans in the U.K. 

Chris van Tulleken, one of Mosley's co-presenters on Trust Me, I'm A Doctor, called him "one of the most important broadcasters of the last few decades" in a post on X. "He basically invented a genre of science broadcasting". 

The BBC called him “a brilliant science broadcaster and programme maker, able to make the most complex subjects simple,” adding that he was “passionate about engaging and entertaining audiences, inspiring us all to live a healthier, fuller life.”

On Sunday, Mosley's wife Dr. Bailey Mosley—who is also a newspaper columnist in the U.K.—paid tribute to her late husband in a statement. "We had an incredibly lucky life together. We loved each other very much and were so happy together."

"He did an incredible climb, took the wrong route and collapsed where he couldn’t be easily seen by the extensive search team,” she said.

She gave her thanks to the many people who worked to help find him, as well as all those who shared their condolences. “Some of these people on the island, who hadn’t even heard of Michael, worked from dawn till dusk unasked,” she said. “My family and I have been hugely comforted by the outpouring of love from people from around the world. It’s clear that Michael meant a huge amount to so many of you.”

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Write to Olivia-Anne Cleary at olivia-anne.cleary@time.com and Simmone Shah at simmone.shah@time.com