Elizabeth Smart

from Katy Etnier

Elizabeth Smart spoke to a packed house in Tilson Auditorium recently as part of the university’s Speaker Series. Once a victim of one of the most followed child abduction cases, Elizabeth Smart has turned her nine-month long nightmare into a reason for living.

Smart’s story began with her abduction on June 5, 2002. Her captors controlled her for nine months with threats against her and her family’s lives if she tried to escape. Police rescued Smart and safely returned her to her family. Smart later testified against her captors, who were convicted.

She opens up about her abduction and rescue in her memoir, “My Story.” A believer of the importance of finding missing children and never giving up, Smart started the Elizabeth Smart Foundation and uses her story to promote the national AMBER Alert, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act and other legislation to prevent abductions.