Happy Birthday Jacob

Tomorrow, February 17, 2016, will mark Jacob Wetterling’s 38th birthday. With permission, I’m sharing a special birthday message, written by his mom, Patty.



Happy Birthday Jacob!

IMG_1397_revBirthdays are supposed to be about parties, hats and noisemakers, cake, ice cream, friends singing and making wishes but not yet. Not this year, again. How I wish to wrap my arms around you and hug you tight! I have watched the tape of your last birthday party over and over. We rented a suite at the Holiday Inn for your party. You and Aaron raced back and forth in the pool and took turns throwing each other in the deep end. It was so much fun!

I want you to know that since you were stolen away from us, people everywhere have been searching, praying and hoping for your safety and for answers. Last fall, 26 years later, news of possible answers had your story as the number two news coverage in the region. That’s pretty amazing 26 years later. People care. There are more good people than bad in the world and people still hope.

My birthday wish is for you to come home. We need to find you. I have another wish for every child who is home safe today, that they will never have to endure abduction or sexual exploitation of any type. We are working just as hard on prevention as we are on searching because this is so wrong… so unfair. I remember how much it bothered you when things were unfair. Me too, it bothers me too.

I am hoping and praying that people will remember you on February 17 and we ask that everyone hug their kids a little tighter, tell them that they love them and take time to play a game or read books. My wish is also that parents will support agencies that help to find our missing kids and help other victims. Today, we ask everyone to volunteer, attend events, send financial support and share safety information. The non-profit work continues on a daily basis. Sometimes sexual exploitation and abduction are on the news, and sometimes not, yet we all rely on the support and expertise of these agencies when we need them. They are there for us. They need our support as well.

And once again today, February 17, we will light our candles, fix your favorite foods and cake, and thank God for the gift of you.
We love you Jacob and we’ll never stop searching for you!
I so wish for a happy birthday for you…

Patty Wetterling

For more information, visit:

Jacob Wetterling Resource Center, www.JWRC.org

National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, www.missingkids.org

NEXT: A legacy of love…


  1. Happy Birthday Beautiful Jacob!! Think of you often. I hope you come home soon. ❤️🎉

  2. What a heartfelt birthday message. You are so right, Patty. People do care and we will help you and your family continue to keep hope alive.

  3. God Bless the Wetterling’s. I am so sorry for their suffering.

  4. Happy Birthday Jacob! My hopes are your family gets the best birthday wish ever!

  5. Ebrumm@isellsolutions.com |

    Hbd Jacob. Always thinking of you. Praying for you and your family. Light will be on

  6. I have always carried Jacob and his family in my heart.

  7. You will find him. You will be able to hug him. We care and you are all in our thoughts and prayers.

  8. Happy Birthday Jacob, wherever you are.

  9. Happy Birthday to Jacob. May your family soon find answers.

  10. Gina Christian |

    WE all love you Jacob. My wish is that your family will soon know where you are.

  11. Pierrette Girard |

    I pray that you come back home Jacob. Happy Birthday!

  12. Happy birthday sweet Jacob. Your mother’s amazing birthday wishes are very true. People love you and want you to come home. No questions asked, just come home. God Bless

  13. Maureen tegmeier |

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR JACOB. We pray for you to come home and celebrate with your family!!!!!! GOD BLESS!!!!!

  14. Happy Birthday Jacob and I wish your family peace and happiness.

  15. Happy Birthday, Jacob!! I pray you and your family will soon be reunited!! 💞

  16. God look at how handsome he is. Happy Birthday Jacob!!! Sending love all the way from Ireland. I think of you and you family often. please god u will find your way home very soon to give your parents that giant hug they so badly need xx

  17. thinkin of u as we celebrate my Granddaughters 3rd birthday….Happy Birthday Jacob!!!

  18. Happy Birthday Jacob. I pray you go home soon.

  19. Happy Birthday Jacob. Your mom’s heartfelt birthday message was truly moving and inspirational. I pray that a joyous resolution will indeed come to pass for you and your wonderful family.The light is always on for you.

  20. I remember the story of Jacob very much. My heart aches for you that day as it does today.

  21. Katie Dolan Estlie |

    Happy Birthday Jacob! I pray for your family and families of all missing children.

  22. Happy Birthday Jacob…I prayed for you this morning. I truly believe soon you will be found. Pls know you are always never far from the minds of those of us who care.

  23. Feeling a tad late posting a comment on this board. But wanting to say Happy Birthday Jacob. I have thought of you so many times over the years. Hoping and praying you are found. I feel the answer is so close.

  24. Joy – I want to commend you for all of the hard work and countless hours you spent investigating the disappearance of Jacob. It was announced yesterday that he was found. I have no DOUBT that you helped immensely in finding him. Also, since hearing this news I have had a horrible ache in my chest. I have two boys (1 and 4) and watching them play yesterday all I could think about was what if that was the last time I saw them smile, giggle, give me hugs/kisses, etc.

    I couldn’t sleep thinking about Jacob and came across this post while reading up on the news. Gosh, this hits home in so many ways and I feel so much empathy for the Wetterling family with all they have endured over the years. No parent should ever have to experience this horrific event. I will be sure to hug my boys and take time to play with them more than ever for Jacob!


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