A few weeks ago, I caught the end of a story on the local news (Austin, TX) about a little girl named Sabrina Allen who had been abducted by her non-custodial mother and very probably taken to the area in and around Mexico City. Somehow, this beautiful little blonde-haired child looked familiar to me, but, for what reason, I had no inkling. Slowly, it occurred to me that this child, whom I had never seen before, was the daughter of one of my best friends from high school, Greg Allen. It was interesting to me that maybe there was something in her face that reminded me of Greg's mother and sisters, all of whom are very lovely women.
Anyhow, I had heard before about this abduction from another old friend, but didn't know what the appropriate thing to do would be. I hadn't spoken with Greg in more than a decade (see this space about two weeks ago on the issue of long-unseen friends), but I kept his plight in mind.
Now, there has been a push in the local media to help Greg find his daughter. The local ABC affiliate(KVUE) and the Austin American-Statesman have run stories on Greg's trip to Mexico City, where he is taking a crash-course in conversational Spanish (to help him with the local authorities and any possible witnesses) and plastering signs all over town featuring Sabrina's and his ex-wife's pictures.
I realize, of course, that this weblog is as far from the appropriate forum as it can be to be a place where an appeal can be made, but who can say what a random reminder may or may not yield? I'm simply tossing a pebble into a pond. If, somehow, these words are being read by someone who has just returned from Mexico City and who remembers seeing a blonde-haired six-year old girl in the company of a dark-haired, light-complected woman (neither of whom is fluent in Spanish), that person should consider logging onto Greg's website and comparing his or her memory to the many pictures of Sabrina found there.
I don't know Sabrina, but her daddy was one of the brightest guys I've ever met. He was one of those guys back in high school who was so adept at technical issues that he made wise-crackers like me look like the poser I was. Eagle Scout, salutatorian, or doctoral candidate at the University of Texas: this is a man who would trade any of that for the safety of his child. I wish him all good fortune and hope for the day that I can shake his hand in congratulations ---as I have many times before.