In a story that’s as sad as can possibly be, it has been confirmed that former EastEnders actress Sian Blake and her two children have been confirmed dead after being missing for the past three weeks. She was 43 years old.

Blake, who memorably starred in the popular British soap as soul singer Frankie Pierre, was last seen alive on December 13, 2015, along with her sons Zachary Bilal Kent-Blake, 8, and Amon Ben George Kent-Blake, 4. They were officially reported missing a few days later, which kicked off an investigation. On January 4, a forensics team was brought in to search the family’s home in Erith, and two days later, the specialists were excavating the garden and found the three bodies. Earlier today, police confirmed that these were the missing Blakes, and that they had died because of “head and neck injuries.”

According to the BBC, the police said that notable attempts were made to keep the bodies hidden, another indication that foul play occurred. At this point, the cops are looking to speak with Blake’s partner and father of her children Arthur Simpson-Kent, 48, who had been officially interviewed the day after Blake and her children went missing. But he appears to have fled the U.K. for Ghana at some point in the days after, and no one has been able to contact him. Blake’s sister Ava claimed that Blake had ended her relationship with Simpson-Kent previously, but that she wanted to give him time to find somewhere else to live, rather than kicking him out of their home.

Blake was a telephone receptionist before nailing the audition that got her a role on EastEnders, a show that has launched many a career on all sides of the globe. She starred as Frankie for 56 episodes from 1996 and 1997, and she later said she left the series over the amount of hate mail and death threats that female fans sent her in reference to a storyline where she was in an affair with the character Alan that subsequently ruined his marriage.

Following that, Blake went on to make appearances on series such as The Bill, Casualty, Doctors and Skins before retiring from acting in 2009 and later becoming a sign-language teacher and interpreter. She came out of that retirement in a way in 2015 to voice the character Yugin in the hugely successful video game Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward. She was also known to be suffering from motor neurone disease, also known as ALS and Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

Our thoughts and condolences go out to the Blakes’ family and friends during this time of mourning, and we hope that justice will be served in the future.

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