Mom reunites with son 10 years after dad takes him to Mexico
BY DAN ROZEK Staff Reporterfirstname.lastname@example.org
Juan Miguel Gomez disappeared from his Cicero home in 2000 when he was only 2 1/2 years old, taken by his father to the family’s native Mexico.
His mother initially worked with relatives to try to find the boy before finally contacting Cicero police in 2002, when the youngster already had been gone for about two years.
Despite the delay, police in the west suburb worked diligently with the family and other law enforcement agencies to locate the boy and return him to his mother.
On Saturday, the now boy — now 13 — and his mother, Gilma Torres, met in Cicero for the first time in more than a decade.
The tearful reunion occurred in the lobby of the Cicero police station.
“It was touching,’’ Cicero Police Supt. Bernard Harrison said after witnessing the emotional reunion. “It’s nice to have a happy ending.’’
Torres declined to speak about her son’s return, a Cicero official said.
But Harrison said Cicero police worked with several other agencies, including the FBI and the U.S. State Department, in their efforts to locate the youngster.
The boy’s father agreed through a relative about six months ago to surrender the boy to his mother, but she had to send a relative to retrieve him.
A U.S. citizen, the boy still needed a new passport to be able to return to the Chicago area, Harrison said.
“There were a lot of phone calls, a lot of work to do,’’ Harrison said.
The boy flew home with a relative this week and was reunited Saturday with his mother, as well as an older brother and sister.
“His mom was just thrilled,’’ Harrison said. The boy will have some readjusting to do: although he knew English when he was taken from the Chicago area, he no longer remembers the language.
The boy’s father, Juan Miguel Gomez Sr., apparently remains in Mexico, though police acknowledge they don’t know exactly where he is.