“Alive and well”
Poker player Brad Booth, who had been missing for two months, is reportedly “alive and well”. The confirmation came from his family on September 16, first shared with the poker community early Thursday morning by poker journalist Jennifer Newell.
In a short message, Booth’s family said it turned out that he had been “taking some time to himself”. He did not notify anyone as to his plans or his whereabouts, however, which is why friends and family were worried when he seemingly disappeared on July 13.
His family did not provide any more information on the matter, such as what Brad was doing or where he went. They thanked everybody for the support over the last couple months and left it at that.
Went “camping” and didn’t return
The saga began in early August, when poker podcaster Adam Schwartz tweeted that Booth had not been seen since July 13 and that his friends were quite worried. Schwartz included a link to the official missing person report on NamUS.gov.
The report, created on July 30, said Booth was last seen leaving the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno, Nevada in a 2002 silver Toyota Tacoma truck. Booth’s roommate told authorities that Brad said he was going camping, but the roommate was concerned that by all appearances, the supplies Booth took with him would likely only last a day or two. The implication of this observation was that either Booth’s survival during a camping trip would be difficult, or Booth was not telling the truth about what he was doing, causing further cause for concern.
I hope he’s just out there catching his breath again.”
Schwartz received dozens of public replies to his tweet, along with nearly 200 retweets. The vast majority of people expressed their worry for Booth. A couple described him as being “like a brother” to them. One said that Brad had helped him get through “a pretty rough time” in his life, adding: “I hope he’s just out there catching his breath again.”
Fortunately, it seems like that is what was happening.
Rollercoaster high-stakes poker career
Brad Booth, who will celebrate his 44th birthday this weekend, was born in Vancouver and rose to fame as a high stakes poker player during the poker boom of the early-to-mid 2000s. He made several appearances on the popular poker program High Stakes Poker, telling his tablemates at one point that he had played poker every day for 14 years. He moved from Vancouver to Calgary to the Yukon, the latter being the genesis of his nickname Yukon Brad.
In 2012, Booth admitted to scamming $28,000 from poker pro Doug Polk in a cash-for-online money swap. In an emotional video, he apologized, promising to make good. He vowed to stay away from alcohol, the “pit” at casinos, and online poker until “I get back on my feet and get control of my life.”
the last four years have been so super difficult”
“The last four years have been so super difficult and I’ve had many chances to get my life back together after the UB scandal. And I’ve seemed to fail in every opportunity,” he added.
Booth’s past troubles with finances and alcohol, combined with a comment he made in 2011 when he said that he sometimes felt “at the end of his rope”, were primary sources of concern for friends and family during his disappearance. The poker pro was also known to march to the beat of his own drum, so the hope was that he just went off by himself for an extended break from a crazy year.