On May 6, 2013, Amanda Berry escaped a living nightmare.
She crawled out of the Cleveland house where she’d been held captive since 2003, ran to a neighbour’s home and called police.
Eight years later she’s a familiar face on TV screens in Ohio, working to bring home other missing children.
Watch a snippet of Amanda Berry`s 3-year anniversary at FOX 8. Post continues after video.
Berry was abducted the day before her 17th birthday. She’d been working at Burger King and rang her sister to say she was getting a ride home. Ariel Castro, a school bus driver who was the father of one of Amanda’s school friends, had offered to drive her.
But he didn’t take her home. He took her to a house where he chained her up.
Berry’s mum, Louwana Miller and her sister Beth immediately began searching for her, appearing on TV to plead for information.
Berry saw them, from where she was imprisoned in Castro’s house.
“That kept me going,” Berry told 20/20. “And I said, ‘You know what, I’m going to make it home to you. As long as you fight, I’m going to fight.’”
Castro had abducted 21-year-old Michelle Knight the previous year, and would abduct 14-year-old Gina DeJesus the following year. Berry was repeatedly raped. She kept a record of how many times it happened, hoping that one day Castro would be punished.
Berry watched The Montel Williams Show featuring a psychic called Sylvia Browne. She desperately hoped her mother would appear on the show so Browne could tell her that she was still out there. But when her mum did appear on the show, Browne said, “I’m sorry… she’s not alive.”
“I just broke down crying because I couldn’t believe she said that,” Berry told 20/20. “And then my mum broke down crying, so that hurt even worse.”
A friend told the Cleveland Plain Dealer that Berry’s mother was “never the same” after the psychic. She died in 2006 from heart failure.
Later that year, despite being undernourished, Berry gave birth to a baby girl, Jocelyn. The baby was welcomed as a distraction by all three captives.