Friday, August 16, 2019

The Disappearances of Hannah Upp

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Hannah Upp was 23 years old when she disappeared for the first time on August 28th, 2009. At the time of this disappearance, Hannah was working as a Spanish teacher at a school in New York City. On the evening of her disappearance, Hannah went for a jog on Riverside Drive, located near her Hamilton Heights neighborhood. According to Hannah herself, that jog is the last thing she remembers before she was rescued by deckhands from the water in New York Harbor where she was found floating three weeks later on September 16th, 2009. She was found wearing the same clothing she had worn on her jog on August 28th and she could not recall how she ended up in the water or where she had been in the past three weeks. 

While in the hospital, Hannah was diagnosed with dissociative fugue disorder, a rare form of amnesia that causes people to forget their identity, suddenly and without warning, and can last from a few hours to years.  An investigation into Hannah’s disappearance revealed that she was captured on surveillance cameras at several locations throughout the city. The first location was a Midtown Apple store, where she was caught checking her e-mail. Days later, surveillance cameras caught her returning to that Apple store, and also entering a nearby Starbucks and several different New York Sports Clubs, where she reportedly went to take showers. Hannah still does not recall any of these events, and it is still unknown where she slept, how she ate, and how she ended up in the Hudson River during her disappearance.

Hannah disappeared for the second time a few years later in Maryland on Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013. This time, she was found two days later after she borrowed a stranger’s phone in the Wheaton-Glenmont area and called her mother to come pick her up. Prior to this disappearance, Hannah had last been seen early Tuesday morning walking miles away from the Montessori school where she worked as a teacher’s assistant. When she was found two days later, Hannah told police that she had no recollection of where she had been since Monday evening.

Hannah unfortunately disappeared for a third time on September 14th, 2017. At the time of this disappearance, Hannah was living and working at a school in the Virgin Islands. The day that she vanished was just one week after Hurricane Irma swept through the Caribbean. According to a note Hannah left for her friends on the morning of the 14th, Hannah left her home to go for a morning swim before going to work. There was no reason to believe that she did not plan on arriving home before the curfew that the government had imposed due to the storm. However, Hannah did not return at all that night. The following morning, a construction crew found her clothes and car keys by the beach. Two days later, her car was found with her wallet, ID, and phone inside. 

Hannah went missing shortly Hurricane Maria swept through the island on September 19th, 2017 and still remains missing today. If you have seen Hannah or have any information about her whereabouts, please contact the V.I. police department here.

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