Madeline McCannI’m not sure exactly what happened that made it so the media over here started paying attention to the “kidnapping” of Madeline McCann, but I’m glad it has happened.

Due to my interest in Premier League Soccer (and Everton) I had been well aware of this situation for a long time. The McCann family lives in Liverpool and Madeline is an Everton fan (and looks as sweet as can be in her Everton jersey).

Her family (parents, Madeline, and twin siblings younger than Madeline) was on vacation in Portugal when Madeline was abducted from their hotel room while the parents dined downstairs.

Tick in eyePutting a “parenting mistake” aside (they should not have left the children alone) – this has been an awful tragedy for the family. Madeline has a very unique “tick” in her right eye that had many encouraged that she would be easily identified if they could get lots of pictures out and media attention. So a website (www.findmadeleine.com) was set up immediately and this has been front page news over there for a long time. Many celebrities (David Beckham, Sir Richard Branson, etc) have come out publicly to help raise awareness of the issue and encourage people to donate to the “Find Madeline” fund.

Last photo of MadelineHolding out hope, and wanting to keep attention on the case, Madeline’s parents decided to remain in Portugal until she was found.

Interestingly due to the media craze, Portugal is being portrayed internationally as a dangerous place with an inept police department (can adversely effect tourism) so the government has been exerting political pressure to the police to wrap this up and end it. Due to this pressure and a lack of leads, Madeline’s parents were officially named as suspects (a trace of blood was found in the car they rented).

I find it difficult to believe that her parents were anything more than negligent, but I guess it is possible. I pray that she is still out there though and that someone will find this adorable girl and help reunite this family and let them heal.