Missing boy found shopping for Mother's Day TV gift with 40 cents in pocket

A little boy who wanted to do something special for his mum on Mother's Day has sent a fright through his family and triggered a major police search.

Geelong boy Raith Barlow put 40 cents in his pocket and crept out of his family’s home in search of the perfect Mother’s Day present.

On Sunday morning, still in his pyjamas, the six-year-old used a broom to lift the latch on the door of his Highton home.

Geelong boy Raith Barlow put 40 cents in his pocket and snuck out his family’s home in search of the perfect Mother’s Day present, sparking a police search. Picture: 7 News

“I got on a chair and opened the chain,” the little boy told 7 News.

Raith rode across a major highway on his pushbike to the Grovedale ALDI supermarket, with a plan to buy his mum a television, without telling his parents where he was going.

On Sunday morning, still in his pyjamas, the six-year-old used a broom to lift the latch on the door of his Highton home. Picture: 7 News

He travelled more than three kilometres, crossing the busy Surf Coast and Princes Highways.

Asked why he went to the store alone, Raith said: “because the ALDI sells TV.”

Raith rode across a major highway on his pushbike to the Grovedale Aldi supermarket, with a plan to buy his mum a television. Picture: 7 News


With just 40 cents in his pocket, the pint sized shopper began dragging a flat screen toward the register, and caught the eye of manager Michael Bourdavalis who realised the youngster was there on his own.

He offered to help Reith return home, and walked almost a kilometre with him to a nearby milk bar where they called police who were already searching for the missing boy.

Within minutes, officers arrived to reunite Reith with his worried family.

The Aldi manager walked with Reith to a nearby milk bar where they called police who were already searching for the missing boy. Picture: 7 News

“I came out and thought ‘Gee it's very quiet’,” his mum Stacey said.

“His heart was in the right place but it's scary to think he could take off and do that.”

The relieved mother said she could not thank everybody enough for bringing her son home safely.