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A Family Was Reunited With Their Missing Son After His Photo Improbably Appeared In USA Today

A total fluke ended up reuniting a New York family with their missing son.

Posted on January 6, 2014, at 11:16 a.m. ET

This photo of a homeless man named Nicholas Simmons warming himself against a grate in Washington, D.C. ran in an issue of USA Today over the weekend.

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

On Sunday morning, a reporter for USA Today contacted Jacquelyn Martin, the AP photographer behind the cover photo.

@Jacquelyn_M Hey Jacquelyn, a photo you took ran with my story today. A family has contacted me saying the man pictured is their missing son

Natalie DiBlasio

@ndiblasio

@Jacquelyn_M Hey Jacquelyn, a photo you took ran with my story today. A family has contacted me saying the man pictured is their missing son

/ Via

Nicholas' parents Paul and Michelle saw the photograph on the frontpage after a neighbor posted it to a now-deleted Facebook page set-up to help them find their son.

@Jacquelyn_M This is the picture. Are you available for me to call you quickly?

Natalie DiBlasio

@ndiblasio

@Jacquelyn_M This is the picture. Are you available for me to call you quickly?

/ Via

Nicholas had been missing for four days when they stumbled across his photo.

@Jacquelyn_M Yes, can you call this mother? She lives in N.Y. but her son and husband are headed to DC to look for Nick. I'll DM you the #

Natalie DiBlasio

@ndiblasio

@Jacquelyn_M Yes, can you call this mother? She lives in N.Y. but her son and husband are headed to DC to look for Nick. I'll DM you the #

/ Via

D.C. Police began working with police from Greece, New York, where Nicholas' family lives, to help reunite him with his parents.

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

The family is currently traveling down to Washington. After the photo was taken, Nicholas was taken to George Washington University Hospital as a precaution.

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

"GOD took that photo, GOD made us find him," Nicholas' mom wrote on Facebook. "My baby looks so lost and I will be spending the rest of my life making him well."

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

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