Libby Squire was “in the best place in her life she had ever been” at the time of her death, according to her parents and long-term boyfriend.
The 21-year-old student met boyfriend, Connor James-Pye, when they were in their teens in High Wycombe and he said she “thrived” at university, which amazed him after her troubles as a teenager.
Libby had to deal with a number of mental health challenges as a teenager but her family said she was loving being at university and looking forward to the future.
In his statement to police, My James-Pye described how they stayed close even when Libby went away, saying there were “not many moments of the day we were not in contact with each other”.
He said she was doing well on her course with one of her lecturers saying they had “never seen someone with such a passion for learning”.
Mr James-Pye said she had not wanted to go out on January 31, 2019, because she had a lecture the next day but “she didn’t want to let the girls down”.
“In the last couple of weeks, Libby has been really happy,” he said.
Libby grew up in the High Wycombe area of Buckinghamshire and was the eldest of four children – being particularly close to her mother and to her brother.
In her statement to police, her mother, Lisa Squire, said Libby would joke that she was her favourite child but conceded that they did have a “special bond”.
Mrs Squire said: “We were that in sync with each other I would describe us as being almost as one.”
She described how her daughter was badly affected by a bout of glandular fever when she was about 11 years old and later developed an eating disorder and then depression.
Mrs Squire, who is a neo-natal nurse and has been married to Russ Squire for 23 years, said her daughter self-harmed from the age of 14 and later developed suicidal thoughts.
But she said Libby did not hide anything from her mother and they went through her problems together.
“During this time our bond became even stronger,” she said.
Mrs Squire said Libby was a clever and very organised teenager who got five A* GCSEs, 2 As and a C but she did not do as well in her English, Philosophy and Sociology A-levels due to her mental health problems.
Despite this, Mrs Squire explained, Libby got a number of offers from leading universities, partly through the personal statement she wrote explaining how she had dealt with her problems.
But she said Libby “did not use it as an excuse”.
Mrs Squire said she was surprised how adamant her daughter was about going away to university when her family had reservations, due to her past history.
Libby accepted an unconditional offer to study philosophy at Hull University but took a gap year to travel to Paris and work at a cafe in High Wycombe, talking about a possible future career in writing or journalism.
Mrs Squire said: “She worked hard on her mental health and was in a really good place when she went to university.”
She said her daughter “loved life at university” and threw herself into both the academic work and social life, admitting her daughter would sometimes get quite drunk on nights out, learning to leave her phone at home because she had smashed so many screens.
Mrs Squire said Libby was coping well and said: “She was planning her future and was in the best place in her life she had ever been.”
She said Libby lived in halls for her first year and then moved to the house in Wellesley Avenue with three friends.
Libby’s mother described how she took her daughter back to Hull four days before she went missing and said: “She was looking forward to being back and seeing her friends.”
Mrs Squire said that she normally talked to her daughter every day but they not speak on the day before she disappeared due to her working.
She said her daughter was a “girly girl” and a “real people person” who liked reading, fitness and emo music. She said Miss Squire had a “wicked sense of humour”.
Mrs Squire also said Libby was terrified of water.