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Gabby Petito's Father Shines Light On Mystery Of Missing Teen Couple -- UPDATE!

Kaileigh Catalano Vincent Abolafia Missing Teen Couple Gabby Petito Father

UPDATE, December 14, 5:45 p.m. PT: The two Long Island teens who disappeared late last week have thankfully been found!

As we previously reported (original story below), Kaileigh Catalano and Vincent Abolafia, both 15 years old, were reported missing from their homes in the city of Manorville on Long Island late last week.

Thankfully, though, according to media reports published on Tuesday, the duo has been found. According to the New York Post, the pair was discovered during a “frantic” search by one of their fathers, who found them sitting on a subway bench “in the heart of Manhattan.”

Joseph Catalano, Kaileigh’s father, was the one who made the discovery after getting a tip from local NYPD cops about a teen couple they’d noticed in the subway. He reportedly found them sitting on a bench on the A-Train subway platform at the 42nd Street-Port Authority station. Thankfully, the two teens were apparently physically unharmed.

Speaking to the media outlet about the discovery, Catalano couldn’t contain his glee, saying:

“I couldn’t f**king believe it. I ran over to them and hugged them and then screamed bloody murder for help. It’s a miracle, man. It is the best Christmas gift forever, absolutely.”



Another missing person mystery being amplified by Gabby Petito‘s father.

In the weeks since the YouTuber‘s widely reported disappearance and death, Joseph Petito has become an advocate for missing persons. On Monday he redirected the spotlight to a missing teen couple from Long Island.

Kaileigh Catalano and Vincent Abolafia have been missing since Thursday, December 9. The young couple, both 15 years old, were last seen at the Ronkonkoma train station, supposedly about to board the 3:11 to Manhattan, according to the Suffolk County Police Department. They were brought to the station by a friend from school who saw them off — and that may be the last time anyone they know has seen them.

Video: Gabby Petito Documentary Promises To ‘Shed New Light’ On Murder Investigation

They apparently intended to get lost to their parents; they left their easily traced cell phones at home. Kaileigh’s mom, Ehrin Catalano, told The NY Post on Monday they’ve been on their own since getting dropped off:

“And they’ve been in the city since. And they do not have their phones.”

Ehrin says she believes the teens, who began dating only in September, are “definitely still together.” She also said they’d never done anything like this before:

“They’re two 15-year-old naïve kids and my daughter does not know the city well — and they’re babies.”

Investigators believe the kids, who were last seen wearing black sweats, were spotted in Times Square over the weekend, both at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. restaurant and at the Port Authority Bus Terminal — where an employee said they recognized her as having tried to buy a ticket. They did not say to where, though it didn’t end up mattering; the employee couldn’t sell it to her because she didn’t have her vaccination card with her. Suffolk Police detectives could not verify the possible sightings. Apparently they’ve already gotten a lot of calls.

As to where the teen couple could possibly be headed, Ehrin told the Post:

“We have no idea. Neither of them left bad notes at home and we have no idea where they could be going.”

Kaileigh had discussed her cheer team’s Christmas party and upcoming Sweet 16 party the night before leaving, according to her mother, so this was a complete shock.

Ehrin’s partner, Melissa Panasci, agreed the teens had never gotten in trouble before — and their running away from home was “completely out of character”:

“This makes no sense to any of us as to why she would go and leave. We’re completed blindsided. At this point, we’re assuming they wanted to leave and play in the city and have a good time, but this has turned into them not coming back. Nobody can find these kids… Something’s wrong and they’re not coming home. We’re panicking.”

Kaileigh’s father, Joe Catalano, was also “blindsided.” He told Fox News:

“My daughter’s a varsity cheerleader. She’s a good kid. I don’t know what possessed them to do this.”

Innerestingly, the family had visited Manhattan the weekend before the couple disappeared, taking a trip to see the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. Panasci guessed maybe that was when they got the idea to return alone.

Vincent’s stepfather, James Bonasia, believes the couple may have access to around $1,200 in cash. But who knows how long that could keep them afloat in an expensive city like NYC, especially with both being too young to get jobs.

Did these kids really run away just for fun? Or is there more going on that we’re not hearing about?? We’ll have to wait until they’re found to find out. Hopefully that will be soon.

Vincent Abolafia is described as 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighing 110 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes. Kaileigh Catalano is 5 feet tall, weighs 118 pounds with brown eyes and brown hair — though she may have dyed it black. Anyone with information about their whereabouts is asked to call Suffolk County police at (631) 852-8752.

[Image via Suffolk County Police Department.]

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Dec 13, 2021 18:33pm PDT