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Facebook Page Helps ID Amnesia Sufferer After 4 Years

Facebook Page Helps ID Amnesia Sufferer After 4 Years

A man given up for dead by his family nearly four years ago after he vanished has been found alive after staff at a hospital treating him for memory loss put his pics on Facebook.

Fernando Cuevas, 39, left his house in Uruguay in 2011. When he didn't return home after six weeks, his family filed a missing person report and later registered him as dead.

But in fact Fernando had taken a trip to Argentina where he had given a savage beating that left him with severe amnesia and no knowledge of his past.

Doctors treating him in the city of Corrientes, in north-eastern Argentine province of the same name, said the beating was so severe it was touch and go whether the young man would actually survive.

Spokesman Dr Eros Sotelo Meraz said: "He had been very badly hurt and his injuries included brain damage that meant it was difficult for him to walk, talk or indeed remember anything about who he was or his previous life.

"The only thing that gave a clue to his identity was a piece of paper in his pocket the contained the name Wilson Perez, and as a result we gave him that name and because it was not expected that he would live he was also baptised and then straight-away given the last rites of that name. But he did survive, and although nobody turned up the new him he slowly and painfully fought his way back to health.

"He can now talk happily with medical staff and has basically the intellectual capacity of a child, and has made himself very popular which was why hospital staff decided to give him a Facebook page to see if they could find his family."

And the search paid off when a man whom he had been staying with recognise the image that was shared thousands of times by users in South America, and contacted medics to say that his real name was Fernando Cuevas.

Dr Meraz added: "We contacted officials in Argentina who spoke to the parents who were able to confirm that indeed it was their missing son.

His sister Valeria Castro, 37, said: "I knew instantly. That was Fernando. God had sent him back to us.

She has since travelled to Argentina to meet with him, saying: "I had to go straight away to visit him, my parents couldn't make the journey but it was so wonderful to see him again and alive. He still can't remember us but we are working on it, this truly is a miracle. The next stage is to get him home and hopefully some of his memory might start to come back."

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