In May 2009, Kate and Gerry McCann talked to Oprah about the search for their missing daughter, Madeleine. It had been two years since Madeleine's disappearance, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children had created an age progression photo to show what she might look like now. The photo on the left is what Madeleine looked like at age 3. The photo on the right is what experts believe she would look like today.
Six months after their interview with Oprah, the McCanns have an update their search:
We were very pleased with the Oprah Show interview that aired last May. It was very well-received, especially in the U.K. and, importantly, in Portugal. It was a fantastic platform to launch the new age progression of Madeleine. The release of this image has been incredibly useful, as it has made many people appreciate that Madeleine is no longer 3 or 4 but 6 years old. The success of this has been confirmed in the many letters we've received and was a really important achievement.
Following the interview, there was an increased number of hits to the website and a significant number of orders from the U.S. via the website for Madeleine T-shirts and wristbands. There was also an increase in well-wisher mail and website messages from people in the U.S. Our family has also been stopped whilst out and about by a number of Americans showing their support.
There have been many reported sightings in the U.S. following the interview, and in other countries following the release of the age-progression photo. We're not aware of any major leads coming in following the Oprah Show interview alone, but obviously a lot of information came in after the documentary Madeleine Was Here aired in the U.K. We believe the airing of the two programs in quick succession gave real momentum to the search.
Today, information is still coming in, albeit slower. The investigators are still following up some of their leads.