Harry Speath was supposed to pick up his two children, five-year-old Serena and four-year-old Thomas, after school in 2014.
He waiting patiently at the school gates for the two bubbly kids to be released on a Friday afternoon, two weeks before Christmas.
Harry waited, but his children never came.
A heartbreaking three years followed Mr Speath as police desperately tried to locate the missing children and their mother, his estranged wife.
On Wednesday this week, Harry's torment would turn to Christmas joy when Australian Federal police knocked on his door with his two children in tow.
Serena and Thomas, now nine and eight, were found in the Sunshine Coast hinterland with their mother.
Police initially feared Ms Adare had taken her children abroad to Europe, as she holds dual-citizenship in the UK. Police were further convinced the children were abroad as they were not enrolled into any schools across the country, nor had their medicare cards been used.
Mr Speath refused to give up hope and for the past three years has been running a Faceebok page, Find Serena and Thomas Speath, dedicated to finding his children.
The images of the two were circulated nationally.
Just two weeks ago Mr Speath made a heartfelt plea to the page on the three-year anniversary of their disappearance.
'Today I am reflecting on a monumental milestone in the time line since the abduction of mu children by their mother,' he began. 'It is three years exactly since the last time I saw my children. It is three years exactly since the last time I have spoken to my children.
'It is three years exactly since I've obtained any news as to their education, health, wellbeing and so many other things that any concerned parent takes for granted.
'It's been three sets of birthdays (both theirs and mine), Christmases, Easters, Father's Days, three years worth of holidays, countless visits to their paternal grandmum, aunt and indeed their half brother's visits from his overseas work assignments. In that time, none of us has had the normal family pleasures taken for granted by normal folks.
'So what can I say to my children on this horrid anniversary? I guess all I can say is that I don't know when I'll see you guys. I hope it's soon. I know you guys don't know what all the above stuff is about, and I don't expect you to – until you are much, much older.
'In the meantime. I love you both very, very much. I'm sending you guys many, many, many hugs & kisses across the miles between us, no matter how far.'
Mr Speath will no doubt be spending this Christmas catching up with Serena and Thomas.
This article originally appeared on New Idea.