‘It’s like a miracle’: Mum reunited with son who vanished 12 years ago

A mother who thought her son, who went missing more than a decade ago, was dead, saw a ‘miracle’ after discovering that her son was alive and well.

Joyce Curtis believed her son Nicholas had passed away because she had not seen or heard from him since 2010.

The last thing he knew was that he was hitchhiking through France and Spain, but he thought Nicholas had died because of Covid and even ‘mourned for him’.

However, on December 19, he received a phone call informing him that his son was alive and in a hospital in the south of France.

“I can’t believe it,” he said. “I thought with Covid and everything that happened, I thought he was dead. I felt sorry for him.

“I was shocked when I got the phone to say she was alive. All I did was cry all day.

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“This has been Christmas for me, especially since my husband died in June.

“It’s like the movie ‘The Miracle on 34th Street.’ It’s like Miracle.

“I was resigned to the fact that he was dead. I really thought about it and I think everybody thought the same thing.”

Nicholas left his hometown of Glasgow, Lanarkshire, to travel Europe in the mid-2000s after losing his job as a carpenter.

She told her mother that she was hitchhiking, and Joyce believes she lived on the streets of Paris for a time in harsh conditions.

Having not heard from her son for ‘years’, she decided to report him missing in 2009.

A year later, the British Consulate in Paris contacted Joyce to report that Nicholas had been taken to a hospital in France.

She later flew to visit him with her husband – but that would be the last time she had seen or heard from him in over a decade.

Joyce said, “In 2010, I got a letter saying that Nicholas was in a hospital in France.

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“By then he had been missing for a while.

“After not hearing from him for years, I reported him missing last year here in Glasgow.

“Me and my husband went to visit her and it was so good to see her.

“We were taking him home, but I don’t know why, he disappeared again.

“They were sending him home and I was told he would be put on the plane.

“I was waiting for him at home in Glasgow at a certain time.

“I was working at Southern General Hospital at the time.

“I was waiting for him to come home and there was no sign.

“When I visited him in France, I bought him some shoes and things like that so he could have clothes to wear on the way home.

“I was waiting at work. But he never came home.

“I remember it rained that day. I searched every airport to see if he got on the plane, but nothing.

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“We never heard anything again.

“That was the last news I heard from him until Monday.”

Joyce was shocked when the British Consulate contacted her to warn her that she had been admitted to a French hospital for the second time.

“I spoke to him on the phone. He looks healthy. I asked him, “Are you coming home, Nikky?” And he said, ‘Yes.

“I can’t even imagine what she’s going through. I just need to get her home.”

Nicholas now plans to return home, but Joyce is eager to go to France to see him.

He said: “I’m not getting my hopes up yet until I get him home.

“I hope I can go to France earlier with my daughter so I can see her.”

A spokesperson for the Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth and Development Office said: “We are supporting a British man in France and providing assistance to his family.

“We are in contact with local authorities.”

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