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Missing man contacts family after 10 years.

It’s like a plot-line from a mystery novel, but with a happy ending.

A man, who has been declared missing for nearly 10 years, finally made contact with his family this week after a decade of silence.

In 2005, John Daniel Tohill, better known as ‘Danny’, left Nelson, a picturesque town in New Zealand and ‘headed north’.

That was the last his family heard of him – until now.

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Danny Tohill before he went missing. Image via The Nelson Mail.

Last week, Danny’s brother Tobias answered the phone – but didn’t recognize his brother’s voice at the other end.

Danny had to tell his brother, Tobias to ‘calm down’ as he realised it really was his missing brother.

The last known sighting of his brother, was in 2006.

“He seemed be to working at a holiday park in Te Puke. Danny then left telling the park owners that he might travel to Gisborne or further north. Since then there had been no trace of the then 37-year-old,” the Nelson Mail reported.

“His passport had never been used. He did not own property. He had no current finance. He did not have a current drivers licence. He had not filed a tax return or claimed any sort of benefit,” the Nelson Mail continued.

Losing contact wasn’t unusual for Danny, after high school he would go months without contacting family members, but never years.

Danny’s siblings were left with one question: How do you find someone who doesn’t want to be found?

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Tobias Tohill. Image via The Nelson Mail.
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Danny’s sister Sarah, who lives in Sydney, undertook extensive searches for her brother, as there had been small indications over the years that he was, in fact, alive and well.

An old friend of Danny’s was surprised to find out he was missing when he bumped into Tobias some years ago. He recalled hearing Danny’s distinctive voice call into radio station, Radio Sport, periodically.

At one point, to no avail, Sarah even emailed all the other Danny Tohill’s in New Zealand to see if they had been mistaken for her brother.

“Most people have some sort of presence online, ” she said. “There was no trace of Danny at all.”

Nelson, New Zealand. Image supplied.

His sister even filed a police report, but decided not to go public with it as their father suffers from Dementia and she feared the information would affect his health.

However, as their father is now in the final stages of the illness, the family decided to make a public appeal to find Danny.

The appeal sparked national attention and prompted Danny to get in touch with his family.

Tobias said Danny hadn’t registered how long he’d been out of touch, not realising that it had been a decade.

“He is happy, he must have had his reasons,” Tobias said.

“I guess he has just been busy getting on with life.”

Once the shock factor has worn off, Tobias said, Danny will come down and visit the overjoyed family.

“Everyone is relieved,” Tobias told the Nelson Mail.

For information on Missing Persons in Australia, head to missingpersons.gov.au.