A missing Florida teenager corresponded with her family through letters, telling them she was safe and well. She had reportedly fled from her home five years ago with a suitcase full of clothes and her X-box.
Imagine the pain of losing a loved one, not to death, but undue circumstances. The family of a teen girl who vanished from her house in Tallahassee, Florida, battled the same trauma.
Emily Wynell Paul was only 14 when she disappeared in 2013. As was expected, her loved ones never stopped looking for her, hoping she'd return one day.
Emily Paul. [Left] Emily's cousin, Melissa Parker. [Right] | Photo: youtube.com/Inside Edition
SENDING LETTERS TO FAMILY
The family's heartfelt prayers were answered when Paul sent them a letter confirming she was safe and alive. But she did not disclose her whereabouts. Her cousin, Melissa Parker, told Inside Edition:
"We have spent so much time hoping and praying and dreaming and... you name it. Just knowing she's alive and she's safe and she's healthy is the most amazing news I can possibly imagine."
Parker said she was hopeful for Paul's return, adding that she would reach out and get in touch with her family whenever she felt comfortable.
Emily Paul pictured with her dog. | Photo: YouTube.com/Inside Edition
THE MISSING TEENAGER
Paul fled her home in 2013 and reportedly contacted her family through letters in 2018. After the authorities confirmed that the letters came from her, she contacted the Sheriff's Office in August 2018.
Police reported her as a missing person and stated that she left home after researching online on being a successful runaway.
Paul, who was 19 at the time, reached out to the Bay County Sheriff's Office and confirmed that "she was safe, she had a support system, and she was happy where she was."
Emily Paul pictured with her mom, Pam Massimiani. | Photo: YouTube.com/Inside Edition
THE PHONE CALL
Captain Jason Daffin from the Bay County Sheriff's Office revealed that he received a call from someone who claimed to be Paul. When he answered the phone, he heard a female voice.
Daffin then inquired from her about the letter's contents and to whom she sent them. The woman successfully explained everything, and the officer was assured that he had spoken to Paul.
Soon, the authorities informed Paul's family about the conversation, who were relieved to know their daughter was alive. Paul's mother, Pam Massimiani, took to Facebook and shared the happy news.
FLEEING HER HOME
Paul's last known contact with her family was in April 2013, when authorities and her family noted she left a letter stating her decision to flee and disappeared with a suitcase full of clothes and an X-box from her Southport home.
Police reported her as a missing person and stated that she left home after researching online on being a successful runaway. Despite taking her X-box, she had no activity on social media.
Paul's call with Captain Daffin was also confirmed when she showed up at a police department's lobby, and they immediately informed the Bay County Sheriff's Office. The agency then decided to close the investigation.