Some of the nation's youngest kidnapping victims may not even realize their dark pasts.
Before 2011, Atlanta resident Carlina Renae White had no idea that a woman posing as a nurse abducted her at a hospital in New York's Harlem neighborhood when she was just 3 weeks old. White had always had a nagging feeling that she was raised by a family to which she did not belong, said Ernie Allen from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
White grew suspicious when the woman who raised her could not provide her with a birth certificate. She found her own baby picture on the national center's website and eventually learned the truth. There was a DNA test, and White reconnected with her biological family in an emotional reunion in January 2011. "I never gave up hope," White's grandmother, Elizabeth White, told WABC. "It is like she has been around us all her life. She wasn't a stranger. She fit right in."
White's surprise lead to a similar discovery by Philadelphia software salesman Steve Carter. Carter, who's in his mid-30s, was adopted at age 4 from an orphanage in Honolulu. White's story inspired him to check www.missingkids.com, where he was shocked to find his own face in a photo staring back at him. He contacted the Honolulu Police Department and later underwent a DNA test.
Police determined that three decades earlier, Carter's biological mother, Charlotte Moriarty, took him for a walk and didn't return. His biological father Mark Barnes filed a missing persons report.
Carter says he believes Moriarty put him in the Hawaiian orphanage and told authorities his name was Tenzin Amea. CNN could not independently confirm that account.
Now Carter knows his birth name: Marx Panama Moriarty Barnes.
It was, as Carter put it, "a happy ending to a story that usually isn't a happy ending."
Two of the most heinous child abductions in recent years took place in Austria.
In 1998, 10-year-old Natascha Kampusch was abducted while walking to school. Her 2010 autobiography "3,096 Days" describes the relationship she fostered with her abductor Wolfgang Priklopil. Kampusch wrote how she endured Priklopil's bizarre routines to save her own life.
The book, which was serialized in the UK's Daily Mail newspaper, details how Kampusch was locked inside a "hermetically sealed" concrete jail.
She wrote about being beaten as many as 200 times a week -- until she heard her own spine "snap."
She recalls how she was manacled to Priklopil while they slept together in his bed.
Kampusch escaped in August 2006 when she was 18. In 2010, she was reportedly living in Vienna. Priklopil, 44, an engineer, committed suicide shortly after Kampusch's escape.
In the years after her escape, Kampusch became a media personality, appearing on television shows around the world. She worked for a while as a television presenter in Austria in 2007.
Two years after Kampusch's escape, the world learned about the fate of Austrian teen captive Elisabeth Fritzl.
In 1984, her own father, Josef Fritzl, threw Elisabeth -- then 18 -- into a specially designed cellar, said prosecutors. He told other family members Elisabeth had run away to join a cult.
Josef Fritzl kept his daughter locked in the basement for the next 24 years, authorities believe, repeatedly sexually assaulting her. During that time, he fathered Elisabeth's seven children.
Fritzl's dungeon remained secret until April 2008, when Elisabeth's 19-year-old daughter, Kerstin, became seriously ill and was taken to a hospital. Hospital staff became suspicious and alerted police, who then discovered the cellar.
At a 2009 trial, jurors found Josef Fritzl guilty of rape and imprisonment and sentenced him to life in prison.
Elisabeth Fritzl and her children were given new identities by the state. They also received a pension and and a home in an undisclosed location in rural Austria, according to a report in The Sun.
Katie Beers: Foster family 'instrumental'
Katie Beers was only 9 in 1992 when neighbor John Esposito kidnapped her and locked her in his Long Island, New York, dungeon.
Esposito imprisoned Beers there for 17 days, sexually assaulting her repeatedly. She was chained by the neck in a locked wooden box suspended above the ground. A television in the corner provided the only distraction and the only light. Her only meals were junk food. Her captor broke down, and she was rescued.