Today marks the 27th National Missing Children’s Day. First proclaimed by President Ronald Reagan and observed by every administration since, May 25th is the anniversary of the day in 1979 when 6-year-old Etan Patz disappeared from a New York street corner on his way to school.
His story captivated the nation. His photo, taken by his father, a professional photographer, was circulated nationwide and appeared in media across the nation and around the world. Etan became the poster-child for a movement. The powerful image came to symbolize the anguish and trauma of thousands of searching families.
For nearly three decades, the search for Etan has continued. Just as that day when President Reagan proclaimed the first National Missing Children’s Day, Etan is still missing. The widespread attention brought to his case and those of others eventually led to a nationwide commitment to help locate and recover missing children.
National Missing Children’s Day honors this commitment by reminding parents, guardians, and other trusted-adult role models to make child safety a priority.
What Can You Do?
1. Take 25 minutes to talk to your children about safety.
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s national campaign encourages parents, guardians, and other trusted-adult role models to spend time talking to kids and teaching them ways to be safer.
2. Donate to support the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s programs and services
3. Sign up to receive Wireless AMBER Alerts
4. Be Alert!