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On July 10, 1978, 19-year-old Eric Wilson left his Ottawa home in Rockcliffe
Park for a planned five-day drive to Boulder, Colorado, where he planned
to attend a summer course. Four days later, he called home from Nebraska
and told his brother, Peter, that he'd had trouble with the Volkswagen
minibus he was traveling in. He promised to call the next day at five o'clock.
That was the last the Wilson family ever heard from Eric.
When the Wilson family realized that the police weren't going to search for Eric, they decided to take matters into their own hands. Peter and his father, Dr. William Wilson, traveled to Nebraska and started searching, stopping at every police detachment along the way.
Peter Wilson recalled that everywhere, the response was the same. "Well, maybe he ran away," or "If you don't hear from him in 30 days, get back to us." Neither the state police, nor, initially, the FBI could be persuaded to help search for Eric.
The documentary Just Another Missing Kid, which was first
broadcast on the fifth estate on CBC-TV on April 7, 1981, is an indictment
of the apathy and bureaucracy of the legal system on both sides of the
The film won several national and international awards (see right) and in April 1983, it won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. Read more about the story behind the documentary.