A woman who had been a preacher on Pittsburgh's streets before abruptly vanishing in 1992 was discovered living in Puerto Rico. Patricia Kopta was
A woman who had been a preacher on Pittsburgh’s streets before abruptly vanishing in 1992 was discovered living in Puerto Rico.
Patricia Kopta was found living in a nursing home in Puerto Rico after the Ross Township Police Department spent more than 30 years looking into her disappearance as a missing persons investigation, according to WPXI.
Kopta was known as “The Sparrow” after her disappearance.
“I came home one night, and she’s just gone, and nobody knows where she’s at,” Bob Kopta, Patricia’s husband, stated during a news conference.
According to Bob Kopta, who spoke to WPXI, his wife had some mental health issues and had mentioned wishing to travel to Puerto Rico because of its climate.
“It’s been going on for almost 31 years, it’s been bad,” Bob Kopta said to WPXI. “It cost me a lot of money, I even put advertisements down in the paper in Puerto Rico looking for her.”
“We were contacted by an agent from Interpol, as well as a social worker from Puerto Rico, who believed they had her in an adult care home in Puerto Rico,” Brian Kohlhepp, the deputy chief in Ross Township, informed WPXI. “They said she came into their care in 1999 when she was found in need in the streets where she was wandering around. While there, she refused to discuss her private life or where she came from.”
Patricia Kopta is currently dealing with dementia. Lately, she started revealing information that directed detectives to Ross Township, according to WPXI. Her identification was verified by a DNA test.
“Shock. I didn’t believe it. It was a total shock,” Sister of Patricia Kopta, Gloria Smith, told WPXI. “We really thought she was dead all those years. We didn’t expect it and it was a very big shock to find out she was alive, and we are so happy, and I hope I can get down to see her.”