Jim Pitzen is Timmothy Pitzen’s father. Timmothy Pitzen disappeared seven years ago after his mother, Amy Fry-Pitzen, pulled him out of school one day in May. A few days after she and her son left on a trip, Amy killed herself in a motel, leaving a suicide note that said her son was safe with unnamed people.
Seven years later, a young teenager emerged on April 3 to say he was Timmothy Pitzen, and that he had been held captive by two individuals for the last seven years. However, on April 4, the FBI announced that his DNA did not match, and that he was not Timmothy Pitzen.
The statement from FBI Louisville reads,
@FBICincinnati, @AuroraPoliceIL, Newport PD, @CincyPD, and HCSO have been conducting a missing person investigation. DNA results have been returned indicating the person in question is not Timmothy Pitzen.
Throughout the years, Jim Pitzen always maintained that he had hope he would see his son again. Here’s what you need to know about Timmothy Pitzen’s father:
1. Jim & Amy Pitzen Met at a Party, & Were Married in 2004
According to CNN, Amy and Jim met at a party and dated long distance before marrying. She’d been married once before, per the network, and Jim said he thought her depression would improve once she was in a healthy relationship. But in 2003, she had an incident. To CNN, Jim said, “She had taken some pills, I guess, and [had been] sitting on the edge of the cliff, and supposedly passed out and fell off the cliff.”
Amy became pregnant the next year, and Timmothy was born soon after. The two were married shortly before his birth.
2. Jim Reported His Wife & Son Missing in May 2011, After Amy Took Her Son Out of School
Per BuzzFeed News, Fry-Pitzen checked Timmothy out of his school in Aurora, Illinois on May 11, 2011, and drove 600 miles over the next two days, ping ponging through multiple states with him without telling her husband. Jim eventually reported both of them missing. Pitzen was six years old at the time.
Three days after she checked her son out of school, Fry-Pitzen killed herself in a motel in Wisconsin, leaving a suicide note that said, in part, that her son was safe but he would never be found. To NBC News on Wednesday, April 3, following the announcement that a boy claimed to be Timmothy, Timmothy’s grandmother Alana Anderson, shed further light on the suicide note.
She said, “His mother left me a letter and she said that he would be with people who would love him and take care of him. She felt that her life had come to an end and she was going to end her life and she didn’t want to leave him without good parenting.”
3. Jim Maintained Hope Throughout the Years After His Son Vanished
Following Pitzen’s disappearance, Jim moved out of his family home in Aurora to the town of Clinton, Iowa. Over the years, he and other family members were outspoken in their hope that Timmothy would one day come home.
In a 2015 interview with People , Jim Pitzen said that he often tells himself, “Maybe I’ll see Tim in the morning. Maybe tomorrow they’ll find him.”
He continued in the interview,
“I always wonder what she told Timmothy, Why hasn’t he tried to call? We taught him how to dial 911. ‘This is your number, this is your mom’s number, you know where you live, your address,’ all the stuff you do. We got one of those little IDenticards for kids, with his fingerprint and his name and a picture of him, so if he got lost somewhere you could find him.”
Pitzen added, “He’s not with his mom. He’s not with his dad. Who are these people he’s with? And how do they know him?”
The magazine reports that Pitzen’s IDenticard was found in the motel room where Fry-Pitzen killed herself.
4. Jim Has Made an Effort to Forgive His Wife, According to Multiple Interviews
In his 2015 People interview, Pitzen said that Fry-Pitzen had taken medications for depression in the past, but he couldn’t understand what might have motivated her to take his son.
He said, “Depression is a sickness. It’s something that has to be treated. It can’t be ignored.”
He added, “I forgive, but it’s going to take a lot to get over this. It’s taken a lot of therapy, and a lot of searching and going through it day after day after day, to learn that it wasn’t my fault; she had planned this for a while. ‘Cause you just don’t do something like this without having some plan that goes along with it.”
5. The Boy Who Claims to Be Timmothy Pitzen Said He Was Held Hostage by Two People for Seven Years
The 14-year-old boy who claimed to be Timmothy Pitzen was found in Newport, Kentucky, after he told a woman he had been held hostage by two individuals for seven years. The FBI has not provided an explanation for who the boy really is, now that it’s confirmed he’s not Timmothy.
Per NBC News, the boy told investigators that he had escaped his two kidnappers where they were staying in a Red Roof Inn in Sharonville Ohio. When he escaped, he ran across a bridge to Kentucky, per the network.
After news broke of the potential return of Timmothy, Anderson, his grandmother, reiterated the hope she and Timmothy’s father and many others have held onto for all these years. To CBS Chicago, she gave her one message to her grandson: “That we never stopped looking for him. We are thinking about him, and we love him, and we will do everything to get him back to a good life.”