Florida mother receives letter from her teenage daughter five years after she went missing at the age of 14

  • Emily Wynell Paul ran away from her Southport home in 2013 at the age of 14
  • On July 26, her mother revealed that she had heard from the teen for the first time in five years
  • She received a letter which both she and police believe are from her daughter
  • The mother has not revealed what it said or where Emily has been
  • She says the ball is ‘in her court’ and she remains hopeful she will come home
  • Emily vanished from her home at 6.30am and got in to a waiting car
  • She had a suitcase with her and had also brought along her Xbox
Cindy Mathis shares a letter her daughter left days before her death. CINDY MATHIS

A Florida mother has shared her joy after receiving a letter from her teenage daughter five years after she ran away aged 14.

Pam Myers Massimiani’s daughter Emily Wynell Paul left their home in Southport, Florida, in 2013 when she was just 14.

She left a note telling her parents that she had planned to leave but they have not heard from her since and have grown increasingly worried about her welfare.

Cindy Mathis shares a photo of herself posing with her 16-year-old daughter, Macy. CINDY MATHIS

On July 26, Pam took to Facebook to announce to family and friends that she had heard from her daughter

She has since told The Panama City News Herald that the communication came in the form of a letter which she believed was written by her daughter.

She has not revealed where Emily is or if she intends to come home but she said she was happy in the knowledge that she was safe.

‘To all our friends and extended family, we want to let you know that we have heard from Emily.

‘We do not have any further information to share at the moment.

‘Thank you all for your support and love you have shown to our family,’ the girl’s mother wrote.

Before she left home in 2014, Emily had researched running away and followed the advice of websites which told young people how not to be found.

She has never been back on her Facebook account since she fled and is believed to have used her Xbox to communicate with people outside of her family.

On the day of her disappearance, Emily walked out of her family home at 6.30am.

She had with her a suitcase which contained several outfits and her Xbox. She then got into a car that was being driven by an unidentified motorist.


Another of the 25 letters Cindy Mathis’ daughter Macy gifted her before she died. CINDY MATHIS


It is unclear what drove her to runaway. In missing persons appeals, she was described as an ‘endangered runaway’.

‘She left a three-page note behind at home which didn’t say where she was going, but stated she was going to a safe place and might return after she turned eighteen,’ according to The Charley Project, a charity which investigates the cases of people who have been missing for more than a year.

There have been no confirmed sightings of her over the last five years.

At the time of her disappearance, her mother told how she had been completely blindsided by her decision to leave.

The night beforehand, she said they ‘hugged’ and ‘rocked back and forth’.

‘We were just our usual selves, we hugged in the kitchen Saturday night, rocked back and forth. There were no clues,’ she told WGHG.

Despite the fact that she ran away willingly, police were concerned by the fact that Emily had never once got in touch with anyone in the family.

‘Our main concern in this case is the complete lack of contact,’ Bay County Sheriff’s Investigator Albert Willis said.

‘It’s typically with a teen, certainly her age, a girl, you’re going to see some form of communication,’ he added.

As part of their investigation, they pursued leads in Canada and Spain. Police have not yet revealed whether they know where Emily is now.