Chinese Parents Reunited With Son 32 Years After He Was Kidnapped & Sold

The ‘Circuit Breaker’ has prevented many of us from seeing our loved ones for almost 2 months, and most of us are definitely missing each other dearly.

However, few of us will ever be able to relate with this family, who was reunited with their son over 30 years after he was kidnapped as a toddler.

Upon entering the room, 34-year-old Mao Yin ran into his mother’s arms, hugging her tightly as he was finally reunited with his parents 32 years after being kidnapped and sold.

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Son was kidnapped at a hotel

Mao Yin’s mother, Li Jingzhi, spoke to South China Morning Post (SCMP) in 2019, telling them about her son’s tragic story.

Mao Yin was kidnapped on the way home from kindergarten in 1988. He was just 2 and a half years old then.

They were living in Xian, Shaanxi province at the time, and his father was taking him home from school.

The pair made a stop at Jinlin Hotel on Xidajie, and his father was fetching him a drink, but soon realised that his son was gone.

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That was the last time they saw him, until they were reunited on Monday (18 May).

Reunited with son 32 years later

The Maos made up for lost time with their tear-jerking reunion.

The entire family embraced while the team of policemen and detectives who helped with the search watched, trying to hold their composure, but clearly moved at the sight.

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Mao’s father seemed hesitant at first, standing aside in awe as his son sobbed into his wife’s shoulder, but soon moved in, kissing him tenderly on the forehead.

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Ms Li later told CCTV that she “(didn’t) want (her son) to leave (her)” ever again, after all the time spent apart. 

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Police used artificial intelligence to find son

32 years of searching bore no fruit, until police received a tip that a man in Sichuan paid around S$1,200 (6,000 yuan) for a boy, years ago in the 1980s.

They used artificial intelligence to ‘age’ a photo of Mao Yin, and successfully tracked him down using national databases.

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Mao Yin currently owns a home decoration business in Sichuan, but is considering moving to Xian to live with his birth parents once things are settled, reports Channel NewsAsia (CNA).

Followed hundreds of false leads

In 2019, Ms Li told SCMP of how she and her husband set out to villages and counties around the Xian province to put up posters of their son, nicknamed Jia Jia. She even quit her job to spend more time on looking for her son.

They thought they had tracked him down around a month after losing him after a friend called them, saying he had seen a similar-looking child called Jia Jia nearby in Shangluo.

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Ms Li rushed down to the village, only to find that the child had been sold the day before. Still, she refused to give up, and eventually tracked him down in Sichuan.

One can only imagine her disappointment when she realised that the child was not hers.

Still, they never gave up hope and continued looking for their long-lost son, following over 300 false leads to find him, reported CNA.

Reunited 29 other missing children with their families

Though they failed to find their own son hundreds of times, Ms Li and her husband persevered, even helping reunite 29 other missing children with their families along the way, reports China News.

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She told China News that she could barely believe that she’d finally been reunited with her own son after over 30 years of being apart.

She plans to continue fighting against child abduction in China.

Treasure your loved ones

Seeing as we’ll soon be reunited with some of our loved ones too, we anticipate many other touching reunions like theirs in the coming weeks.

Hopefully, Singapore’s transition into a ‘new normal’ goes smoothly, and we’re able to get together with friends and significant others safely and healthily in the near future.

If the ‘Circuit Breaker’ has taught us anything, it’s to treasure your health, and your loved ones.

Featured image adapted from YouTube.