Hannah Upp repeatedly disappeared to be miraculously found each time. Sadly, she disappeared for the last time on September 14, 2017, and was never seen again.
Hannah Upp’s First Disappearance
At the Thurgood Marshall Academy in Harlem, New York, Hannah Upp instructed students in the middle school. She went for a jog on Riverside Drive on August 28, 2008, but she did not come back.
The sudden disappearance of Hannah shocked the community. Hannah’s friends distributed flyers about her disappearance at bus stops, subway stations, and signposts, but she could not be found.
Hannah Upp was seen in the midtown Manhattan Apple Store’s surveillance footage about two weeks later. The sighting gave her supporters some cause for optimism. They split up into various groups and kept an eye out for Hannah in the woods, on running trails, and underneath benches.
Hannah Upp is found
The Staten Island ferry’s captain spotted a woman bobbing in the water close to Robbins Reef, a rocky outcropping with a lighthouse south of the Statue of Liberty, on September 16, 2008, the twentieth day after she vanished.
To save the woman, the captain dispatched his two deckhands and a rescue boat. The woman was floating face down in the water, and the deckhands first thought she was dead. The woman gasped for air and sobbed as the rescuers lifted her out of the chilly water. Hannah Upp, who had been missing for three weeks, was recognized as the woman.
Hannah was brought to Staten Island’s Richmond University Medical Center. Hannah was lying in the hospital, sunburned, dehydrated, and unable to recall anything about her disappearance, her activities, or her residence during those three weeks.
Unexpectedly, she was able to recall both her name and her mother’s phone number, Barbara Bellus.
Upp was baffled as to how she got into the river. “I went from running to getting into an ambulance. Like ten minutes had passed, it seemed. But it was almost three weeks,” Hannah stated in a New York Times interview.
She was identified as having dissociative fugue, a rare form of amnesia that causes victims to momentarily lose memory of who they are for days, months, or even years.
Hannah left New York to join her mother at Pendle Hill Institution, a retreat for people of all religions, about a year after her disappearance. She participated in daily worship gatherings in addition to working in the kitchen.
Hannah joined as a teaching assistant at a Montessori school for underprivileged kids in Kensington, Maryland after working there for about three years.
Hannah Upp goes missing once more but is found
On the first day of the class, Hannah vanished. In Kensington, her wallet, cell phone, and purse were discovered.
The following day, Hannah Upp is discovered in a filthy creek in a Wheaton, Maryland, neighborhood, 1.5 miles from her school. Right beside her was a shopping cart.
Hannah Upp’s safety ankle bracelet
The Maryland Police proposed using an ankle bracelet with a tracking device to keep track of her movements in the future to keep her safe. Hannah, on the other hand, declined the suggestion because she did not want to be bound by the tracking device. Barbara let go of the suggestion, respecting Hannah’s right to choose.
The similarities between her two disappearances were startling. Hannah had vanished at the start of the school year in both cases, after travelling with her father.
After a year, Upp relocated to St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands, to work as a teaching assistant at a Montessori school.
Hannah Upp is missing once more
She vanished for the third time in September 2017, shortly after Hurricane Irma devastated the island and surrounding areas, killing more than 130 people.
Hannah informed her housemates that she was going to school on September 14. She never arrived at school or returned home. Her neatly folded clothes and car keys were discovered the next day at a nearby beach. It was the same month as her previous disappearances, and her disappearance was linked to water once more.
She had stopped using her phone about six days before her disappearance and appeared to be on autopilot. Her friends, however, assumed she was under stress because they were unaware of her fugue state of mind or her previous disappearances.
Her friends spent three days exploring the sea and shore, but they had to call it quits because Hurricane Maria was heading their way.
Hannah Upp’s disappearance evokes the haunting memory of Lauren Spierer, who vanished mysteriously in the early hours of June 3, 2011, after a night out with her friends in Bloomington, Indiana. Lauren, too, has gone missing.