Scary, isn't it? But this happened to a good friend of mine. Read on for some important information every parent should know...
I want to share with you an important story. It happened to a friend of mine called Lucinda and is about the time when her son Jake went missing. It contains some vital information that every parent should know. Lucinda's sister, Vicky blogged about the terrifying day and it went viral so you may have come across this story before, but if not here's what happened.
It was a summer's day in Bournemouth and the whole family were at a beach event. The family consisted of Lucinda (mum), Alan (dad), and their 2 sons Josh (10 yrs old) and Jake (4 yrs old). Jake knew not to talk to strangers or leave his parents whilst out, so what happened?
It was very busy at the event and Jake was holding his mum's hand. There were lots of stalls and Lucinda stopped to pick something up and look at it. She let go of Jake's hand. It was just a couple of minutes, if that.
When she went to take his hand again, he wasn't there! She tried to stay calm and thought that he couldn't be far away but she started to panic and called out his name but she still couldn't see him.
Within minutes an army cadet who was working at the event was by her side and he asked her what had happened. He immediately told the other event stewards and they all started shouting "We are looking for a boy" "He is 4 years old and in a red T shirt. Have you seen him?" They walked around the surrounding area, all constantly shouting the same message.
The detail in their messaging and the speed in which it happened is undoubtedly what saved him. Within about 15 minutes he was found a little further down the beach...I know you are thinking that he is just a little boy who wandered off. But unfortunately that's not correct. What Jake said when he was found put a sinister slant on things.
"There was a bald man in a white T shirt, he said he would take me to see his rocket ship." Jake is a quiet little boy and not the type to come up with tall stories so this seemed very genuine.
Because the army cadets acted so quickly, shouting out Jake's description and that he was lost, this meant the man had no choice but to abandon Jake and walk away as he couldn't leave the beach without being spotted. The police think this was an unplanned abduction. The man had to walk a fair way on the beach before he got to the road so it was risky. So Lucinda thinks that the man just saw Jake and took his chance.
Her advice to every parent if they ever find themselves in this situation would be to just shout, loud and clear, who you are looking for and what they look like, even if you suspect that your child is just around the corner. Without such quick actions it could have been a very different ending to this story.
If you would like to hear more from Lucinda's sister Vicky or to read the original article go to her blog page: www.OliversOutings.com
Luckily, despite this scary experience Lucinda and her husband Alan and their two boys, Joshua and Jake haven't let this hold them back. They are currently travelling around Europe and homeschooling the boys.
LUCINDA'S FAMILY ON THEIR TRAVELS
Here's their blog page if you would like to follow their adventures: www.100BucketListAdventures.com
I hope you found this story informative and you follow in Lucinda's footsteps by not letting it put you off having lots of fun trips with your family this summer.
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