For millions, the disappearance of 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas was a bizarre and riveting far-away story. But for Elizabeth, it was a nightmare of a life.
For more than 40 days, Elizabeth Thomas had been missing. Believed to be kidnapped by her former 50-year-old teacher, an Amber Alert was issued for the 15-year-old girl. Finally, after days of national media coverage, the pair were eventually discovered.
When Tad Cummins kidnapped his student, he was a married man with children of his own. But that didn’t stop him from convincing a young and impressionable 15-year-old girl to come away to California with him. After what is believed to have been a short but very intimate relationship in their town of Columbia, Tennessee, they were off to start their own lives in California.
Now, more than a year later, Elizabeth is speaking out for the first time. In an exclusive interview with 20/20, Elizabeth shared that her teacher first approached her in the middle of the school day during the 4th period.
Elizabeth shared with the interviewer that as sat on her desk, Mr. Cummins sat across from her. During what should have been a casual conversation between a student and her teacher, Mr. Cummins spoke the unthinkable told Elizabeth unnecessary thoughts about what would look like undressed.
Elizabeth revealed that she was scared and embarrassed and didn’t know what to tell people. As a formerly homeschooled child, she was sheltered and felt shame and confusion by an adult and teacher speaking to her so inappropriately. Elizabeth goes on to reveal how their relationship unfolded and what eventually influenced her to flee with her teacher.
Many were concerned with Elizabeth’s mental health after her tragic and horrific experience. She had gone through such traumatic events and surely she’s had to learn how to cope with her heartbreaking scenario. But just when hope seemed lost, Elizabeth met an 18-year-old named Skylar Dirla.
The pair began dating in March, nearly a year after her initial abduction. After only a few months of dating, the Skylar proposed to his girlfriend! While a wedding date hasn’t been set yet, we wish the very best for the couple and hope that Elizabeth’s past trauma with her abduction is settled. Congratulations to the happy couple and please be praying for her!