Girl gets back special teddy bear lost in airport shooting

2017-01-11 13:24
Courtney Gelinas, left, is hugged by her mother Kim Lariviere, center, after being reunited with her stuffed bear Rufus, at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. On the right is Kim's sister Kacie Gelinas. (Lynne Sladky, AP)

Courtney Gelinas, left, is hugged by her mother Kim Lariviere, center, after being reunited with her stuffed bear Rufus, at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. On the right is Kim's sister Kacie Gelinas. (Lynne Sladky, AP)

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Fort Lauderdale — Close to where workers are finishing the clean-up from the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting, a girl was reunited with the teddy bear she left behind while fleeing.

Courtney Gelinas smiled as Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport spokesperson Greg Meyer opened the trunk of his SUV on Tuesday to reveal Rufus, the teddy bear the 10-year-old from Windsor, Ontario, had received from her dying grandfather a decade ago. When Meyer handed her Rufus, she held the bear tight.

Courtney was with her parents and siblings and about to board a plane home when officials say Esteban Santiago fatally shot five people one floor below them on Friday. Rufus was left behind as the family fled onto the tarmac. Her mother said Courtney has not slept well since.

The airport is returning 25 000 stranded items after the incident.

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