Mom Searched 32 Years For Kidnapped Son—She Reunited 29 Families With Missing Kids Before Finding Hers
In this story from May 2020, Mao, a 34-year-old man from China, was recently reunited with his family after a 32-year separation due to his being kidnapped as a small child. The Chinese police department made the reunion possible after using facial recognition technology to track the 34-year-old down.
As a young boy, Mao Yin, who is now 34, was headed home from school on the fateful day when he was separated. They were walking with his father when he stopped at a hotel to get some water, but a kidnapper grabbed him and took him away as soon as his father looked away.
BBC reports that Mao was eventually sold for a sum of about 840 dollars to a childless couple. The event left his parents searching for him tirelessly. After three decades of desperate searching, Mao's parents reunited with their son earlier last month.
Mao's new family named him Gu Ningning, which he stuck with until he was reunited with his biological parents. He had a good childhood as the new family raised him as their child. The emotional reunion happened at a police-organized press conference and was also aired live by CGTN, China's state broadcaster.
The police department in Xi'an received a tip-off that a man had brought a child from Shanxi to Sichuan province in the late '80s. On receiving this information, they used modern facial recognition technology to examine Mao's photos as a child. The old images allowed them to develop Mao's image simulations as an adult.
According to CNN, the simulated images were then compared with photos in the national database, which they used to track down the man. The photos led them to the city of Mianyang, where they met a man who resembled Mao's portrait. The police later used a DNA test to confirm his identity, and they later confirmed that it was indeed the little boy who was kidnapped three decades ago.
What most people find fascinating about this story is that Mao's parents never gave up hope in searching for their son. Li, Mao's mother, and her husband dedicated their lives to find their lost child. She left her job so that she could focus on looking for her son. She also appeared on several Chinese shows, asking help from the public. She was hoping that by doing so, her son would see her on the television and make his way home. After the reunion, Mao confessed that he had seen Li on TV but did not realize that he was her son.
The reunion was deeply emotional, not only for the family but also for the witnesses. Mao was brought into a room surrounded by police officers, and on seeing his parents, he immediately ran into their arms, causing everyone in the place to burst into tears.
Amid the tearful reunion was a smiling family filled with joy. Li expressed her happiness by saying that she would not want her son to leave her anymore. Mao, who currently operates a house decoration business, said that he plans to move back to his hometown so that he can be close to his parents.
There are still many unanswered questions regarding the situation. The most prominent one is whether there will be anyone to pay for the crime of kidnapping. Unfortunately, the situation is not unique to Mao and his family.
China is currently facing a massive crisis with child abductions. Currently, Baby Come Home, one of the popular platforms that allow parents to place notices of missing children, has over 13,000 registered families. For now, all that Mao and his family can do is to celebrate their reunion as they await more details from the police department.
What is your take on this story? Do you believe that it is one people around the world need to hear? Let us know your thoughts in the comments and be sure to pass this along to spread the awareness of kidnapping in the world.