In a bizarre story of love, deceit and death, one man’s story has surfaced after he was believed to be a dead husband, and a father of five, missing for sixteen years.
Eric Myers, who was 34 years-old at the time he went missing in 1991, had it all. Myers had two homes, five cars, ran his father’s multi-million dollar real estate company, just to name a few. So what would make a man just disappear?
Years after Eric Myers disappeared, he was legally pronounced dead by his family, but was not dead at all – just turned out to be gay. You must read on.
Eric Myers’ wife and five kids all believed Eric had disappeared and was dead, instead he had only gone on to live a different life due to a claimed depression he had been battling since childhood, Eric says.
Myers, who says he contemplated suicide three times since childhood, left his family and landed himself in Mexico then went to Palm Springs while developing a relationship that would, according to Myers, answer the question of his depression.
Somewhere during his sixteen years that his family believed he was dead, Eric had developed an ongoing gay relationship with Sean Lung, a Canadian tourist who he met in Palm Springs. Eric attempted to work odd jobs, which required no ID, and then later the two continued their relationship.
Sixteen years later, Eric Myers returned to tell his story of how he wasn’t dead, but was instead just gay.
Despite Myers telling his story to the world and why he re-appeared after sixteen years, there are a few people in his life who are not giving in so easily to his return which has caused legal issues and the insurance company Liberty Life to demand $800,000 plus interest from the family. Among those who are not buying his excuse for leaving because he felt the life wasn’t him — his wife Anne Myers and his daughter Kirsten Myers Ruggiano.
Watch the full video with 20/20 below.
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After much counseling, returning was the right thing to do for a myriad of reasons. I definitely did not return ‘to feel better about myself’ – if that was my motive, staying away would have been better. The possibility (not guarantee) for healing and closure for others was my motive for returning. Once I successfully grasped hold of my own forgiveness, I strengthened myself in all ways to prepare myself for whatever may become upon my return. At the point I was sure I was ready for anything, I returned. (See more at ThatWasTheAct.com).
I make no excuse. There is none.
A dam breaks and harms all below it.
Afterwards, research reveals the weaknesses of the dam – not making ANY excuse for not addressing what should have been addressed before the dam broke.
The research is done to help others to see what weaknesses must be addressed to avoid such harm in the future.
What made me go off the deep end are NOT justifications or excuses. The dam broke. I speak my “WHY” so that others will be true to their real selves and thereby avoid breaking (or even getting into the ‘damn’ situation in the first place). Not being true to self (eventually) always results in collateral damage…which is wrong and painful for all involved.
I felt I had failed as a husband and father and I could not accept myself as a gay man. I had nothing left to live for. Then I got robbed and I snapped. I didn’t decide to leave my family – I had a breakdown and left. I would not have done what I did if I was mentally healthy.
I never thought about running away. In San Diego, I was traumatized by a robbery. I was broken down, weak and I cracked. My greatest fear was losing my entire family and the life I knew, if they found out I was gay. I grew up in the 60s. When it was not OK to be gay. (Others who have lived in fear, shame and hatred may not have cracked. I was weak and I did.) I thought of killing myself 3 times when I was 13. I became a religious fanatic hoping to cure myself. In that religion, divorce and being gay are not options. In my mind I did not have a choice. I failed with my family and my faith failed me. Killing myself was an option too.
I am humbly greatly sorry for all the harm my damn situation brought to everyone.
ABC’s 20/20 program, "I Escaped My Life…" took 100s hours of coverage and edited it into 21 mins of Sensationalism vs. Balance Journalism – for Perspective/Understanding check out ThatWasTheAct.com.
Others, who have made huge mistakes, hide. One more closet I’m not willing to be in. This is a discussion to reduce such future tragedies. If my motive was to be viewed positively, I would have stayed away. Before, I couldn’t face my life; now I can AND AM.
My previous weaknesses are lessons for others, to help as many as possible to avoid my pitfalls.
There are NO excuses for my mistakes – only background to help others who may be in similar situations, not to make theirs. After the airing of 20/20 we went on whirlwind tour to get to NYC for "The View's" airing on August 2nd ( http://watchabc.go.com/the-view/SH559080/VDKA0_x4l7qrmf/the-view-82 ) < the story starts at the 19:27 minute mark.
It is as if I believed there should be no gun restrictions and after hurting someone horribly with a gun, I’ve become an advocate for restrictions. Living A Charade Causes Much Damage for All Affected.
COME OUT, COME OUT — For Everyone’s Betterment.
I am OK with being the “Come Out” Poster Person similar to a Stop Smoking Poster, showing what could happen.
I made a serious mistake and if anyone reading this will learn from it, and not do anything hurtful by living a charade, then some good can result.
Hating does not undo any past actions. It does change future actions, beliefs and decisions. Semantically, I don't like the choice of the word hate in that to hate something; one must constantly give it energy and attention.
Nothing whatsoever can be said/done to undo. I do regret that that statement is absolutely true, yet accept that it is. Though someone's sentence has been served – it does not undo the act – nor undo the pain caused by the act. Even sentencing one to eternal damnation does not undo.
I pray time, healing and forgiveness can repair vs. undo.
I hope this much needed conversation continues. So that it will make it to those living a charade, and encourage them to stop and avoid the collateral damage that will eventually result.