The Baldwins were the classic American family living the classic American dream. John and Stephanie Baldwin raised their kids in the right neighborhood, attended church, were active in their community in Plano, Texas; and most importantly, were close to their kids. This isn’t a fictional setting either. I knew this first hand. John is a friend of mine and had been an active co-worker of mine for several years. If you asked me to describe someone that exemplified middle-class America I would have pointed directly to John and his family.
Their experience focused on the events surrounding their daughter MacKenzie’s senior year of high school is a story you’d expect from a Hollywood screenwriter. It involves social engineering, potential human trafficking and kidnapping, the FBI, and a cat named Angel. But most importantly, it is centered on a father and mother’s unwavering love and commitment to their daughter. A willingness to do whatever it took to protect their daughter from a situation no of them ever saw coming.
John and Mackenzie have written the book Almost Gone describing this experience and outlining the potential dangers technology and social media have for teens in today’s digital world. They’ve also become frequent speakers on this topic and have been interviewed on multiple media outlets including The Today Show with Megyn Kelly.
This is their story.
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