Blind Detroiter missing in Peru, family seeks help

  1. American social activist / author wanted to see the world before she totally lost her sight
  2. Valpeoz was diagnosed with "mild to severe" optic nerve atrophy at age 10

A blind American woman who traveled from Michigan to Peru went missing on Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, after attending a wedding.

Carla Valpeoz, 35, has been missing since in the South American country. She was last seen on Wednesday, Dec. 12 when she returned to her room at Pariwana Hotel in Cusco from a nightclub evening.

Brother Carlos Valpeoz told The Detroit News that Carla’s roommate, after waking up, saw that she had disappeared with his belongings. A security camera caught her when she took a taxi from the inn — she eventually lost her flight back to Detroit.

According to Mr Valpeoz, the U.S. State Department initially told the family that she could have traveled to a town near Cusco. But now they are all begging for the public’s help to find her.

“What’s become frustrating for my family is we’ve got all these resources and no one has the slightest clue of what happened to her. It’s like she’s evaporated.”

For years Ms Valpeoz — a social worker, worldwide traveler and author of ‘Visionless Adventures’, a book that encouraged others with visual impairments to see the world — defied expectations of the legally blind by crisscrossing the globe, sometimes solo, to explore new places like Egypt and the Yemen.

Her disappearance has left a noticeable impact in the community.

“Carla canvassed all over southwest Detroit for immigrants rights when she was a Michigan United Fellow. Through this, she identified issues neighbors were concerned about and to make sure that they were registered to vote,” said friend Mayra Valle of Detroit.

“Carla also worked with me for Global Detroit when we talked to small businesses in southwest Detroit because she could speak Spanish and Arabic. We are sad that we don’t know her whereabouts during this trip.”

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