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Gabby Petito's mom said she and her fiancé had called off their engagement before going on the cross-country trip where she vanished




Gabby Petito and fiance Brian Laundrie
Gabby Petito and fiance Brian Laundrie  
  • The mother of missing Gabby Petito said her daughter and fiancé had called off their engagement.

  • "They were excited at first, but then they were like, let's just wait, we're very young," Nicole Schmidt told the Daily Mail.

  • Petito had posted on Instagram that she got engaged to Brian Laundrie in July 2020.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

The mother of Gabby Petito said the young woman and her fiancé had called off their engagement sometime before Petito went missing on a cross-country road trip with her boyfriend.

"I think they kind of put that on hold just because they felt it was a little fast. They were excited at first, but then they were like, let's just wait, we're very young. So they were really just boyfriend and girlfriend," mother Nicole Schmidt told the Daily Mail of Petito and her beau, Brian Laundrie, in a report published Tuesday.

Petito and Laundrie had been dating for just over two years and got engaged in July 2020, according to Petito's Instagram account, which has since been removed.

"Brian asked me to marry him and I said yes! @bizarre_design_ you make life feel unreal, and everyday is such a dream with you ????," Petito wrote in the now-removed post.

Schmidt told the Mail: "They went to high school together. They were friends. They got back in touch and started dating."

But now she said she's looking at their relationship in a whole new light after Laundrie returned from their cross-country road trip without her daughter.

"Maybe the relationship wasn't what I thought," Schmidt told the Daily Mail.

Petito and Laundrie set out from New York on July 2 in a white converted camper van, documenting their travels on social media along the way.

Schmidt reported Petito missing to New York's Suffolk County Police Department on September 11 after Laundrie returned home to Florida in the van they were traveling in without Petito.

Petito's family publicly called out Laundrie on Tuesday for refusing to help them find her, begging him to "at least tell us if we are looking in the right area."

Schmidt, who last FaceTimed with her daughter on August 24, told the Daily Mail that she reached out to Laundrie and his mother before she reported Petito missing, but that they ignored her.

"I texted Brian's mom that I was trying to get in touch with Gabby. I also texted Brian. I got no replies," Schmidt told the Mail.

"I knew something was wrong. I felt something was off and I needed to get her reported missing immediately."

A spokesman for Florida's North Port Police Department previously told Insider that Laundrie's family has refused to let him speak with investigators.

Laundrie's attorney, Steven Bertolino, released a statement on Tuesday.

"This is understandably an extremely difficult time for both the Petito family and the Laundrie family," the statement said. "On the advice of counsel, the Laundrie family is remaining in the background at this juncture and will have no further comment."

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