A Canadian man missing for nearly five years has been found alive, wandering in a Brazilian Amazon city thousands of miles away from where he was last seen.
Anton Pilipa was last seen in 2012, and flew back to his home country this week after being treated at a hospital in Manaus, Brazil, which he reached while traveling and eating out of trash cans.
Stefan Pilipa told the CBC that his 39-year-old brother, who he called an anti-poverty activist, likely got to South America through a combination of walking and hitchhiking.
Brazilian federal police said last month that the itinerant Pilipa had been seen once in the city of Porto Velho in November, agitated, swearing and unable to speak Portuguese.
The foreigner with long blond hair did not have any documentation, but told an officer who could speak English that he was from Canada.
A repeated sighting of the Canadian on a road leading deeper into the Amazon after he left a hospital prompted the Brazilians to reach out to his home country and learn that he was the long missing man.
As his brother learned about Anton’s discovery in late December, police in the state of Amazonas were on the lookout for the traveler, and ultimately found him in the city of Manaus shortly after the new year.Anton Pilipa told BBC Brazil, who reported that before leaving Canada he had started treatment for schizophrenia, that he traveled through nine countries including the U.S., Mexico, Colombia and Venezuela before reaching Brazil.
He said that he sleeps out in the open, feeding and clothing himself from trash cans, but also received generosity from those he’s met along the way.
Despite insisting that he had not become lonely, Pilipa told the BBC that he was happy to be returned to his family in Canada.
Stefan Pilipa started a GoFundMe page for the expenses of getting his brother and setting him up with a place to live back in Toronto, and has raised more than $12,500 as of Wednesday evening.
The New York Daily News
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