Five years earlier, his mother had fled to Japan from the US, essentially kidnapping Chris and his brother during a custody battle. The father, Mike Gulbraa, had run out of options because Japan doesn’t recognize parental rights if they’re non-nationals. But then Mike received a text message from Chris saying he wanted to come home.
Escaping to dad
After one failed attempt to escape Japan, Chris was under close scrutiny by his mother who’d fled the US with him over a custody battle. But he soon tried again to get back to his dad in the US. At one point, he was stopped at airport customs before boarding his plane. He texted his dad for help. The plan worked, and father and son are now reunited.