A Georgia mother and her two sons were reunited this week, in no small part because of an East Texas man. The boys had been taken by their father and were found at a motel in Austin on Sunday.
A Gladewater man saw the boys on the news, then saw them at the motel where he was staying and called police.
Theresa Nash and her boys Ben and Henry - ages 9 and 7- can't get give or get enough hugs. Sunday they were reunited in reunited in Austin, Texas, nearly 1,000 miles from their Georgia home.
"We're pretty tired. We had two hours of sleep last night. We've been hugging and kissing and saying, 'I love you. I love you more. I love you,'" says Theresa.
The joy and relief comes in part, thanks to a Gladewater man, John Lacy. John had been visiting his own son in Austin, when he saw Theresa plead for her boys safe return on CNN. What happened next, he's still trying to wrap his mind around.
"I saw the two boys first, and kids that age all look similar. But then, when I drove behind the truck and saw the Georgia license plates, a little red flag went up and I pulled into a parking spot," says Lacy.
John got out his phone and pulled up the story. He compared the photos of the missing boys to the boys in the parking lot, but he needed just a little more confirmation. So, John headed inside the motel.
"I said, 'I need to know if this guy just checked in here. If so, that gentlemen with his two kidnapped sons are in this parking lot.' And [the woman at the front desk] looked at me and said, 'Sir, I can't give you that information, but if I were you, I would call 9-1-1," John says.
John waited anxiously for police to arrive. While their father was arrested, John took the boys into the hotel lobby.
"I got a call and... it was a gentleman," Theresa told CNN earlier this week.
"I'm calling you from Austin, Texas to let you know that I'm sitting here with your two sons," John told her.
"All of a sudden Henry was on the phone and he said, 'Mommy!' and I said 'Yes?' and he said, 'Yay!,'" Theresa told CNN.
The boys talked to their mom for almost an hour. John says they'd been told by their father that she was in the hospital and they couldn't see her.
"It was just meant to be and it all worked out and God had a grand design, I believe," John says.
John says he and Theresa plan to keep in touch. He also says he hopes this story will help more people realize that missing children are not just local news, but national news because if a network hadn't picked up the story, he would have never known about the boys while he was in Austin.
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