Timmothy vanished after his mother, Amy Fry-Pitzen, pulled him out of kindergarten early one day, took him on a two-day road trip to the zoo and a water park, and then killed herself at a hotel. She left a note saying that her son was safe with people who would love and care for him, and added: “You will never find him.”
Police have said she might have dropped the boy off with a friend, noting that his car seat and Spider-Man backpack were gone.
Timmothy’s grandmother said her daughter had fought depression for years and was having problems in her marriage to Timmothy’s father. News reports suggested she was afraid she would lose custody of the boy in a divorce because of her mental instability.
At Greenman Elementary after the boy’s disappearance, Timmothy’s schoolmates, teachers and parents tied hundreds of yellow ribbons around trees and signs. A garden was planted in his memory.
The brief but tantalizing possibility that the case had been solved generated excitement in Timmothy’s former neighborhood.
Pedro Melendez, who lives in Timmothy’s former home, didn’t know the boy but saved the concrete slab with his name, handprint and footprint etched in it when he redid the back patio. It is dated ‘09.
Linda Ramirez, who lives nearby and knew the family, said she was “pretty excited” but didn’t “want to have false hopes.”
Rowley expressed hope that the flurry of activity and attention had renewed interest in the case.
“Perhaps, it has people looking at the case with new eyes,” the police sergeant said.
Babwin reported from Chicago. Associated Press reporters Carrie Antlfinger in Aurora, Caryn Rousseau in Chicago and Corey Williams in Detroit contributed.
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