A man who was kidnapped at the age of three and sold a total of four times has finally been reunited with his family after 20 long years.
Ren Yuan, 24, had no recollection of his birth parents, but always knew that he was adopted, having been transferred from family to family since his abduction in 1996.
The man originally from the township of Jundian in Central China’s Hubei Province says the question "Who am I?" bothered him greatly over the years, eventually leading him on a quest to uncover his past.
Ren Yuan’s biological parents said their then-three-year-old child was taken while he was playing alone outside their home.
Years of searching followed, but with primitive methods and no extensive missing persons database like there is today, they were ultimately unable to track their boy down.
Meanwhile, Ren Yuan had been taken to neighbouring Henan Province where he was put to work in his foster family’s restaurant at the age of 12.
In 2008, aged 15, he moved back to Hubei to become a cook, unaware that he was now living in his native province, albeit quite a distance away from his place of birth.
Ren Yuan said his quest to find his parents started after he met an elderly woman to whom he recounted his story and is upbringing.
She encouraged him to dig into his past, and that is when he provided his DNA sample to the police in Wuhan, capital city of Hubei, in 2010.
It was not until December last year that the authorities found a match with a man named Ren Dongsheng from Jundian Township.
Subsequent blood tests carried out at the beginning of this month confirmed that the man was none other than Ren Yuan’s father, and the young man was reunited with his family a few days later.
The tearful reunion was held in Ren Yuan’s hometown, where dozens of friends and relatives also attended the special occasion.
Ren Yuan did not say whether he planned to move back to Jundian Township.