My great-nephew was missing for over 5 hours yesterday. My nephew was out of town and his usually SAHM wife had to pick her Mom up from the hospital. The 4 boys, ages 10 to 16, were instructed walk home from school. They've done it before, the older ones making sure the youngest one gets safely home. It's only 4 blocks. #3, the 12-year-old whose school is a bit further away, never showed up. You can imagine the increasingly frantic phone calls and searches, and the growing panic. A notice was posted on #3's FB page that he was missing and asking for help to find him. One of his friends finally tracked him down and told him to call home - just before an Amber alert was on the verge of being issued. It was after 9pm. He'd just decided to go home with someone else and told that kid's Mom his Mom knew where he'd be and had given him permission. NOT. I can't figure out why the other kid's Mom hadn't called by at least dinner time to see if it was still okay. #3 had even gone to church with them! Probably a good thing a police officer answered the phone, after which they went to pick him up and he rode home in the back seat of a squad car. His brothers were so scared and angry the 10- year-old threw something big at him when he got home. I can only imagine how relieved and furious his parents felt. #3 was too embarrassed to go to school today - like that stopped my niece from making him face the consequences. My sister was still so upset her voice was shaking when I talked with her this evening. It will be interesting to see what possible additional punishment could be more effective than having 2 older brothers and 1 younger take their fright it out on him, having the police lecture him all the way home, and getting heck at school. I'm sure he won't like what Mom and Dad mete out either. Thank God he was ultimately safe. BUT WHAT IS IT WITH KIDS???
To make this more horrifying for the parents is that 3 or so years ago a boy on one of the kid's soccer teams went missing along with his Mom, whom my nephew and niece also knew. It was learned 3 or 4 weeks later that both the mother and child had been bludgeoned to death by her ex-boyfriend, their bodies dumped in a shallow grave in the middle of a field. Had the man he persuaded to help dispose of the bodies not been arrested on another matter and then confessed his role when questioned about this one, they likely would not have been found for months, if ever. The murder of their young friend deeply upset and affected my nephew's family for a long time. I'm sure the memories of that horrible time made this situation that much worse.