The tragic story of a young Vancouver woman whose teddy bear featuring the voice of her late mother was stolen has a happy ending. After Ryan Reynolds offered a $5,000 reward for the safe return of the beloved bear on Saturday, Mara Soriano shared on Twitter Tuesday night that "MAMABEAR IS HOME." Reynolds shared the update on his own account, thanking everyone who "searched high and low" and the person who took the bear for "keeping it safe." The Canada native concluded, "Vancouver is awesome."
The news was met with emotional responses from around social media. "I literally woke up this morning and the first thing I did was check to see if the bear had been found," one person wrote. "Coincidentally so did my faith in humanity and Canadians ability to pull together for each other." Another user told Reynolds, "As a parent, and as someone who lost a parent young, thank you for your efforts for this young girl," while a third wrote, "That’s AMAZING! What wonderful news! I’m literally tearing up. Yay mankind! Thank you Ryan for leading this charge, well done."
The Deadpool actor first joined the search for Soriano's bear when he read a story from CBC TV about the 28-year-old's distress after having her backpack stolen during a recent move. While the bag also contained important documents, an iPad and a Nintendo Switch, Soriano said she only cared about having the bear with her mother's voice returned after her she passed last June at the age of 53 following a battle with cancer. Soriano told the outlet that her mother's voice changed and became softer after she was admitted to hospice care, and that the teddy bear audio was the last recording she had of her mom before that change. "She said that she loved me and she was proud of me and that she'll always be with me," she told the station.
Reynolds jumped into action after learning of Soriano's search, tweeting the story and offering a massive reward for the bear's safe return. "Vancouver: $5,000 to anyone who returns this bear to Mara. Zero questions asked. I think we all need this bear to come home," the actor wrote Saturday. Canadian chat show host George Strombolupolus and director Rawson Thurber then added $5,000 to the pot as well, with celebrities such as Dan Levy, Zach Braff, and PJ Byrne sharing the story on social media.