The brother of a Derry man who went missing from a hospital in Liverpool has said he believes the people of Derry may have saved his life.
As the search continued for Michael Curran, who was being treated in a brain injury rehabilitation centre, Merseyside police said they were becoming increasingly concerned for his safety.
His brother Declan launched an appeal on Facebook and flew to Liverpool to join the search. There was a tremendous response by the Derry community on the social networking site.
Declan told the ‘Journal’ that Michael has “an acquired brain injury from an attack in the town some 14 years ago”.
He added: “Within hours of my Facebook post there were literally hundreds of people sharing the plea on Facebook. The police issued media statements expressing their concern he was missing. We were at a loss as to his whereabouts without any money, warm clothes or sense of direction as he isn’t familiar with that area. I did numerous radio interviews here for the people of Derry to spread the word with friends in Liverpool to keep an eye out for him. On the second day a local girl from Galliagh working in Liverpool saw my Facebook plea and contacted me. I passed the information of where he was last seen to the authorities who assured me they would act on it but seems they never did.
“Three days passed and we feared the worst. I decided to go to Liverpool and search for him myself. Within two hours of arriving I managed to find him in streets in the same area he was spotted by the girl from Derry.
“We, his family honestly feared he was dead and were preparing ourselves for the worst. I think it’s a miracle that he was found thanks to the people of Derry pulling together and looking after their own. I would really like to thank the local people of this town for the help and support they provided in rescuing my brother and inevitably saving his life. He would not have lasted on the streets for much longer if it hadn’t been for them.”
After finding Michael, Declan posted on Facebook: “Just to let everyone know I’ve found Michael in Liverpool about half an hour ago alive! Thanks for everybody sharing. It was through Facebook I found out the last place he was seen which is the area where I found him today.”