Mom Rented Van, Vanished With 3 Sons for 2 Weeks

They've now been found safe
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2016 2:32 PM CDT
Mom Rented Van, Vanished With 3 Sons for 2 Weeks
Michalene Melges is shown in an image from her real estate website.   (

On May 9, Michalene Melges rented a van in Lake Bluff, Ill., more than 40 miles away from her home in Lake Geneva, Wis. She called her sons' school and asked for the boys to be excused for a vacation May 10 to 13. And then they vanished, with the rental van being returned in Plano, Tex., on May 13 without anyone apparently seeing the family. But, the Chicago Tribune reports, all four have now been found safe in Georgia. They were spotted by someone who recognized them from news reports, but it remains a mystery where they have been or what they have been doing for the past two weeks, Fox News reports.

Melges, 40, is a well-known real estate agent in Lake Geneva. She finalized a divorce from the father of her sons—Hans, 14, Kristian, 12, and Maverik, 10—earlier this year, and by disappearing, she violated child custody rules because the boys missed several visitations with their dad. Melges and her ex had no history of police calls at their home, but in April, she did ask police for "an extra watch at her home," per a Lake Geneva police rep. The FBI and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children helped local police with the search. (More missing mom stories.)

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