A Pennsylvania girl who disappeared greater than 30 years in the past and was believed to be useless by her household was lately discovered residing in a nursing dwelling in Puerto Rico, her household and police mentioned at a information convention Thursday.

Patricia Kopta, 83, was final seen in Pittsburgh in the summertime of 1992, in response to a lacking individual flier posted by the Pennsylvania Emergency Response Middle.

Her husband, Bob Kopta, reported her lacking a couple of months later within the fall. On the time, he suggested authorities that it wasn’t unusual for his spouse to “drop out of sight for brief durations,” in response to the flier.

“I come dwelling one evening and he or she’s gone, and no one knew the place she was at,” Kopta mentioned on the information convention with Ross Township Police.

Police mentioned they have been first knowledgeable in regards to the discovery of the lacking girl when an agent from the Worldwide Legal Police Group (INTERPOL) and a social employee from Puerto Rico contacted them final 12 months saying that they believed Patricia was residing in an grownup care dwelling in Puerto Rico.

“What they reported to us was that she got here into their care in 1999, when she was present in want within the streets of Puerto Rico,” Ross Township Deputy Chief Brian Kohlhepp mentioned.

INTERPOL and the social employee mentioned Patricia was discovered wandering the streets and thru the years she had “refused to ever talk about her personal life or the place she got here from,” Kohlhepp mentioned.

In her superior age, Patricia began revealing nuggets that will finally spur these round her to contact Ross police, Kohlhepp mentioned.

When she was in Pittsburgh, Patricia was a “well-known avenue preacher,” in response to the lacking individual flier. She would strategy strangers, telling them she had visions of the Virgin Mary and that the world was coming to an finish, the flier mentioned.

Police mentioned her disappearance wasn’t overtly suspicious as a result of they “knew she had a psychological well being historical past and he or she had made statements to different household people that she was leaving, that she was involved that she was going to be positioned right into a care facility right here,” Kohlhepp mentioned. Kohlhepp mentioned police knew she had seemingly left of her personal volition.

Her husband mentioned that his spouse had talked about eager to go to Puerto Rico to reside in a tropical setting.

“I even marketed within the paper down in Puerto Rico on the lookout for her,” Kopta mentioned on the information convention, including that he spent some huge cash over time trying to find her.

Patricia and Bob have been married for 20 years earlier than she went lacking, Kohlhepp informed CNN. He added that Patricia had no recognized household or connections in Puerto Rico.

Police decided the girl was the truth is Patricia by means of a nine-month-long course of by which they in contrast DNA samples offered by her sister, Gloria Smith, and her nephew.

“We actually thought she was useless all these years,” Smith mentioned on the information convention.

Even earlier than DNA testing was accomplished, the household knew it was Patricia as quickly as they noticed her photograph, Kohlhepp mentioned.

Smith mentioned that she has known as the grownup care dwelling in Puerto Rico a number of occasions however has been unable to carry a dialog along with her sister as a result of she has dementia.

“We didn’t count on it. It was a really massive shock to see – to know that she’s nonetheless alive,” her sister mentioned. “You already know, we’re so completely satisfied and I hope I can get right down to see her.”

CNN has not been capable of immediately contact the girl’s household.

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