College Student Who'd Gone Missing Reunites With Mom

Ken DeLand Jr., who turned up in Spain, will be flying back to US on Saturday, official says
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 17, 2022 10:00 AM CST
College Student Who'd Gone Missing Headed Back to US
Ken DeLand Jr.   (DeLand family, via NBC News)

A US college student studying abroad in France was reported missing last month, then found alive in Spain on Friday. Now, Ken DeLand Jr. has been reunited with his mom and will soon be headed home. DeLand "is currently in Lyon with his mother, and they should be taking a plane together for the United States today," Grenoble public prosecutor Eric Vaillant said in a statement early Saturday, per NBC News. It's still not clear to the public what exactly happened to DeLand, 22, who was taking part in an overseas program through New York's St. John Fisher University, but it appears from a statement on his family's website that he may not have known at first that there was a massive search for him.

"We want to thank all the Media members for their diligence and swift attention in spreading the word about our Son," the site notes. "Without the media's help, Kenny would not have seen himself in the news and reached out to us." Ken DeLand Sr. messaged CNN that the "whole situation" has been "surreal," adding, "And now it's finally, last chapter." The elder Ken DeLand also says that, while he doesn't have many details to offer on what the younger Ken DeLand has been doing for the past two weeks, his son has asked him to stop contacting media outlets. (More missing student stories.)

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