Missing Saint John native back in Canada after being found safe in France
Published Monday, November 13, 2017 10:59AM AST
Last Updated Monday, November 13, 2017 9:01PM AST
A Saint John native who was missing for nine months has been found safe overseas and is back in Canada with her family.
Shannon Mary Sullivan’s family had been looking for her since mid-February, when she suddenly left her job in Toronto.
Toronto police determined she rented a car from the Amsterdam airport in early March, but left it in a mall parking lot shortly after.
Shannon’s family set up a Facebook page, asking for the public’s help in locating her.
They received and followed up on several tips, including one from a Canadian traveller who thought they might have spotted Shannon in southern France in September. Her brother, Terence Sullivan, travelled to France to try to find his sister, but his efforts were unsuccessful.
However, he posted an update on Facebook on Friday, saying his sister had been located in the south of France on Nov. 5.
Sullivan travelled to France and, together, he and his sister returned to Canada on Friday.
"It's just a great sense of relief, obviously coupled with just joy,” says Terence Sullivan."It was a moment I'll never forget. You can't put it into words, just to know that she was alive and well.”
Terence received a call from Toronto police saying Shannon had been found in a small village west of Nice in southern France. He was on a plane the next morning and was directly taken to Shannon by the police officer who found her.
"I saw her and she had a huge smile and I'm sure I welled up,” says Terence. “I gave her a big hug and I said, ‘I'm going to take you home,’ and she said, ‘Yeah, let's go home.’"
Terence says Shannon was unaware her family had been looking for her this entire time.
“There's a lot of the information we just don't know now,” Terence says. “At this point it's not important for us to know the whole story … we're just in the immediate future now to make sure she gets the help she needs and she's open to that."
Terence says his family expects Shannon to share her story whenever she feels comfortable. But for now, he’s just glad to have her home in Saint John.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Mary Cranston.