Abduction survivors say Ohio rescue proves hope lasts - KMSP-TV

Abduction survivors say Ohio rescue proves hope lasts

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Abduction survivors, including Elizabeth Smart and Jaycee Dugard, say the rescue of three abducted women who had been missing for 10 years say the story shows people should never give up hope.

"It's amazing," said Allison Feigh, of the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center. "It's absolutely amazing. It gives us hope to continue this work."

Feigh said the story developing in Cleveland is proof that no one should ever stop looking for missing children -- and for her, the story is also personal because she spoke with Amanda Berry's mother after her daughter disappeared.

"Her mom had called it in soon after she went missing, trying to find extra resources," Feigh recalled. "One of the things that [she] was adamant about, publicly as well as to us privately, is that she did not believe Amanda ran away."

Sadly, Berry's mother did not live to see that she was right and that her daughter escaped. She died a few years ago. For other mothers of missing children, however, her belief and the events in Cleveland embody the powerful message that persistence matters.

Jacob Wetterling's mother, Patty, spoke with FOX 9 News from Washington, D.C., where she was presenting an award to Dugard, who was rescued after 18 years in captivity.

"This is just a testament that missing children are out there and it takes everyday citizens to pay attention and to ask," she said. "Look at the pictures and ask questions."

What stands out in the Cleveland case is that the victims escaped. Experts say it is typical for kidnapped children to appear compliant, afraid to run or even speak.

"This is a very different recovery than what we're used to," said Feigh. "Often, when missing children are found, they deny that they're missing because they're trying to protect the abductor, who -- at that point -- was their only lifeline."

In Cleveland, it appears the young women saw a long-awaited chance and took it.

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