Dear Target – a thank you letter


  1. Oh, phew! How terrifying for you. I had a friend’s son run away from her in the supermarket (he wanted to visit the lobsters apparently) and the supermarket went into lockdown until they found him.

    And, even though it happened so long ago, I can’t even see the name of John Walsh or his son Adam without tearing up. That family truly took any parent’s worst nightmare and used it to make so many important changes in how we deal with lost children.

  2. It breaks my heart the reason Code Adam exists and needs to exist. I am really glad that the folks at the Longmont Target were able to help you so swiftly.

  3. Oh wow. I feel for you. I had one of my kids slip away when my back was turned. I looked around and called his name, but no response. I went to the clerk to let her know they needed to lock down the Gap store. It was a scary few minutes, and thankfully the store was nearly empty. But what a fright it gives parents!

  4. Amy-my eyes welled up at certain parts as I have a daughter with adhd that bolts a lot. :( we live in a major metro area, so there are a lot of dangers!
    Glad that he was found safe!

  5. so glad this had a happy ending!!!!!!!

    i’ll never forget once getting lost in a grocery store. i must have been about 5, but i clearly remember coming up to the cash register sobbing and having them page my mom over the loudspeaker. i think the other side of your story is to remind our kids what to do if they’re lost in a store…thanks for the reminder.

  6. Oh my gosh! That is so scary. I was tearing up just reading it. I’m so glad that everything turned out the way it did. That sounds like something my 4 year old would do, too. Glad that he was safe.

  7. That is the scariest feeling. I’m usually pretty easy going when I can’t “see” my kids and know they’ll turn up, but one time I lost them in downtown Breckenridge on the 4th of July. I was BESIDE myself with panic. A lady found them walking to the toy store together…

  8. I’m so glad you found him and all was well. That is such a huge fear of mine, and it only takes a nanosecond for them to slip away from you : (

  9. I’m so glad your little guy was found safe and sound. That sounds really frightening. I had my own scary kid incident on Saturday – I hope whatever was in the air has cleared, for both our sakes.

  10. it is the WORST feeling. so glad he was found quickly.

  11. I am so happy to hear such a happy ending to this story! You are not the first person I have known to have a very positive experience at Target with a lost child. Yay for Target!

  12. I’m so glad it ended well! My 3 year old is a wanderer — just this weekend we found him just about 10 seconds before they locked down Macy’s!

  13. This happened to me in another town. I had never been so freaked out in my life. The employees of the store I was in were also very helpful, although I didn’t think to approach them. I was too frantic to think at all! Thank you for the “What To Do” part of your post. I wasn’t aware of that policy.

  14. So relieved he was found safe! How scary. I remember being lost in the mall when I was that age, and it’s a sickening feeling. Even worse was when I lost sight of Mikko at Walmart and had this same experience of both Sam and me rushing around, frantic, trying to spot a very short child among the racks of clothing. He, on the other hand, was not frightened at all and Sam eventually found him wandering very far away (that’s scary, right there!), sing-songing to himself, “Mama, mama!” as if I were the one who had wandered off! Urgh. Next time I will ask the employees for help. I’m ashamed to admit this, but I was feeling too guilty to tell anyone I had lost my child!

    By the way, my mom used the opportunity of my getting lost as a child to remind me always, always to stay put and wait for her to find me, rather than be also wandering off looking and not crossing paths. I think the idea of going to the nearest customer service desk is an even better idea, if possible, but still — once Mikko can comprehend this, I think I’ll have to drill that into him: Stay still!

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