Ryan Reynolds revealed on Wednesday that a stolen custom Build-A-Bear, which contained the voice recording of a mother’s message to her daughter before her death, had been found and returned.
“In happier news… thanks to everyone who has looked up and down. To the person who picked up the bear, please keep it safe. Vancouver is awesome. #FoundMarasBear, ”he wrote on Twitter.
Reynolds, 43, previously offered a $ 5,000 reward for the bear.
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The “Mama Bear” research effort intensified in Canada, thanks to a local reporter and the actor’s $ 5,000 pledge of “no questions asked” to the one who returned the plush. After four days, 28-year-old Mara Soriano recovered the plush souvenir, which is said to be in “perfect condition”.
“She’s home,” Soriano told CBC Tuesday night at the meeting point. “I didn’t think she would come back, but she did.
Soriano said she had checked countless back alleys and dumpsters in Vancouver’s West End. However, it wasn’t until she received an email from a stranger claiming to have information about the disappearance that she began to hope for the bear’s safe return.
“Of course I jumped on it, because it was a lead,” she said.
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” I called [CBC News reporter] Deborah Goble because she was the person who broke the story, and I couldn’t have done it without her, so I wanted her to be there too. Plus, she’s an adult and I wanted to make sure everyone was safe.
“They brought the bear to CBC, which was a safe meeting place… and we did. ”
Soriano said she placed the backpack containing the bear while she went to attend to a friend who called her to explain that he had been hit by a van as he was getting was cycling to help Soriano and her fiancé move out.
It was at this point that Soriano said that she forgot where she had placed the bag and that it had been recovered, along with an iPad, a blank checkbook, Soriano’s green card as well as passports and documents. social insurance cards of her and her fiancé.
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“It’s a home call,” she said. “The bear has a message in Filipino. He says “I love you”, but in our language. So it’s very specific and very unique. ”
Nearby surveillance video captured a man intercepting the bag as he walked past.
“They released her,” Soriano said of the bear, which was returned by two men who did not want to be identified by the outlet.
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Soriano said she also gave the men a small amount of her own money as “collateral” until Reynolds’ engagement was made. TV host George Stroumboulopoulos, another Canadian, said he would match the amount as well.
According to Soriano, his late mother’s voice was recorded and placed in the bear after his mother went to hospice for cancer treatment.
“At the hospice, his voice was different. Much softer. Not the mother I grew up with, ”she told CBC. “This bear is the last memory I have of her speaking in her normal voice. She said she loved me and was proud of me and will always be with me. ”
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Soriano’s mother died of cancer in June 2019.
Naledi Ushe of Fox News contributed to this report.