Child reunited with teddy bear lost during Ft. Lauderdale shooting
A 10-year-old girl who lost her favorite stuffed animal in the chaos and evacuation that followed the Fort Lauderdale shooting that claimed five lives Friday has been reunited with her beloved teddy – Rufus.
The girl's mom. Kim Lariviere, took to Twitter for help finding the beloved bear, who was dressed in a cute red onesie, for her 10-year-old daughter, Courtney, who has had the bear all of her life, according to reports.
Rufus was a gift from Courtney's late grandfather.
"'Looking for Rufus from Terminal 2 D8. Crying daughter cannot sleep. #FLLshooting help!' she wrote on Twitter.
Airport officials have been working to get 23,000 items back to their owners since the 16-hour airport shut down in the aftermath of the shooting and Rufus had not yet been returned to the Canada family.
The Broward County Sheriff's department then retweeted her message.
After some searching, Rufus was found safe and sound.
'We found Rufus!' airport representatives wrote on Twitter, telling the mother they'd be in touch by private message.
Lariviere tweeted back a thank-you message, writing: 'Omg!!!!!! From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU!!!!'
The mother recounted being in Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Airport with her husband and their two children after finishing a cruise when the gunman, Esteban Santiago, opened fire.
'I'll never experience this fear again. This is a once in a lifetime fear,' Lariviere told CTV.