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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Cleveland Rescue After 10 Years, "Never Give Up Hope"

Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight (from left to right)
Three Cleveland, Ohio women — Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight — vanished separately a decade ago while in their teens and early 20s only blocks from the eight-room house where they were found in Monday night. Their rescue came when Berry, now 27, hailed a neighbor while her captor was out, kicked in part of the front door with his help and frantically called 911.

Today, these resilient women, long past their teenage years, are on the path to rebuilding a life that was stolen from them over a decade ago.

Jaycee Dugard, who was kidnapped from South Lake Tahoe as a girl and held captive for 18 years, said the Ohio women found after apparently being held for more than ten years "need the opportunity to heal and connect back into the world."

Dugard said in a statement that the apparent abuduction and imprisonment of Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight "isn't who they are. It is only what happened to them."

"The human spirit is incredibly resilient," Dugard said. "More than ever this reaffirms we should never give up hope."

As a missing children's agency aimed at "Keeping Hope Alive," Jaycee's words could not be truer in wake of such a polarizing recovery. And she knows first hand the power of resilience and hope from her own 18 year imprisonment by a sexual predator.

We encourage everyone to always keep a vigilant eye out for those reaching out for help or other signs. This is especially true for missing children and human trafficking victims. Our eyes and ears are potential lifelines for these victims.

Please take some time to review our missing children profiles. If you think you may have information on the missing individual, call the law enforcment number provided or Child Quest International at 1-888-818-HOPE.

Human Trafficking Hotline (Polaris Project) 1-888-373-7888

Related Stories: 
Local parents of missing kids find hope in Cleveland rescue 
Jaycee Dugard family felt 'same joy' when Cleveland women rescued

By Anthony Gonzalez for Child Quest International

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