A man who went missing nearly 30 years ago has been found after he suddenly remembered who he is – and he had only been living 80 miles away from home.
Edgar Latulip was 21 when he vanished from a hospital in Kitchener, Ontario, in September 1986.
He was being treated after trying to commit suicide and, after he disappeared, police believed he had gone to Niagara Falls to kill himself, the Guelph Mercury reported.
Edgar Latulip went missing 30 years ago aged 21 but has just remembered who he is and is now set to be reunited with his family. Photographs from missing person posters show what he could look like
His mother, Sylvia Wilson, had long given up hope of seeing her son again until Mr Latulip, now 50, suddenly remembered who he was last month.
He gave a name to a social worker, who searched online and found a missing persons poster with that very name. A DNA test has now confirmed that it is him.
Ms Wilson told CTV News that she was overwhelmed by the news and that she was planning on meeting her son, although she has not spoken to him yet.
Police believe Mr Latulip, who has the cognitive abilities of a child, did board a bus to Niagara Falls, but at some point suffered a head injury that made him forget who he was.
‘Pieces of his memory started coming back,’ Niagara Regional Police officer Philip Gavin said.
‘Then the social worker found something on the internet that led them to believe this was something more.’
When Mr Latulip went missing in 1986, police believed he had gone to Niagara Falls (pictured) to kill himself
Mr Latulip was living in the St Catharine’s area of Ontario, about 80 miles from where he went missing.
In 2014, Ms Wilson said she had never been able to forget about her son and was ‘near a nervous breakdown’ after he vanished.
‘This is always at the back of my mind. Having an answer would mean closure,’ she said then.
There was a reported sighting of Mr Latulip in Hamilton, Ontario, in 1993, but police could not track him down.
Detective Constable Duane Gingerich was part of the original search teams who looked for the boy and said his discovery was ‘awesome’.
‘I had hopes that he was out there somewhere. It’s satisfying because most of these cases don’t turn out this way. You expect the worst when a person is missing for that period of time.
‘It was only recently that these lapses in his memory started to come back. There was enough about it that we thought, “There’s something to this”.’
Mr Latulip has been told he is a DNA match to his family and police are now trying to arrange a reunion.
‘I did speak with one of the family members yesterday and today, and they’re obviously very happy about it, and they’re making plans to get together with Edgar and speak with him further,’ Det Gingerich told CTV.
If a person is at risk, he, she or a family member is urged to called the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.