By Bryan Garcia
Family Roadtrips are fun for the most part. It’s a time where family members and friends get to share their lives and time with each other. It’s a social gathering that breaks the ice between the shy and the awkard. However, that wasn’t the case with the Tromp’s.
The Tromp’s were known as hardworking members of society who had their very own farm and Earthmoving business in their hometown of Silvan, Australia. The Tromp family consisted of Mark Tromp (51), Jacoba Tromp (53), Riana (29), Mitchell (25), and Ella (22). Two parents and three children. Everything was going fine.
It wasn’t until August 29, 2016 when everything started to turn in a 180 degree angle; it was at this very day that the Tromp’s decided to head on an unusual family road trip. It is important to note that the Tromp family decided to prohibit any form of technology, including smartphones, during their family road trip.
Starting from their hometown Silvan, the Tromp’s headed towards a town named New South Wales which was 900 kilometers away up north. Everything was going according to plan, until Mark and Jacoba found out that Mitchell had taken his cellphone with him. As a result of this, the Tromp parents forced Mitchell to throw away his smartphone out the car window. Upon reaching New South Wales, Mitchell decided that the whole family road trip was a preposterous idea and decided to go back home to Silvan on August 30.
After the Mitchell’s departure, the rest of the Tromp’s decided to head towards a tourist attraction known as Jenolan Caves which was 475 kilometers away east from New South Wales. Once the Tromp’s arrived at Jenolan Caves, Riana and Ella decided to abandon the family road trip. They decided on stealing a car as a means to go back home, and it is unknown when the Tromp sisters left the road trip.
Now the only ones left are the parents: Mark and Jacoba Tromp. Mark and Jacoba decided to go to Melbourne, a regional area near their hometown Silvan. However, as time went on Mark and Jacoba decided to go their separate ways in the family road trip. Jacoba decided to go up north again and Mark decided to stay in a town named Wangaratta. It’s also important to note that Wangaratta is the same town where Mark and Jacoba went their separate ways. After the day of total separation, Jacoba was found in a town named Yass and Mark was found near a road beside the Wangaratta airport.
After all of this, the police did their investigations on the Tromp’s and they discovered this: the reason why the Tromp’s abandoned their home in Silvan was because Mark and Jacoba felt like they were in danger of someone and felt the need to flee. They left their family farm, their passports, their credit cards, and even their smartphones. Mark and Jacoba felt that they would be tracked down by their unknown danger if they were to bring smartphones with, explaining why the Tromp’s forced Mitchell to throw his cellphone out of the car window.
As for the aftermath of the entire fiasco, Mitchell arrived in Silvan, their hometown, by taking a series of trains and other forms of transportation.
After committing “Grand Theft Auto”, the Tromp sisters had decided to go their separate ways. Ella went back home in Silvan, while Riana decided to hitch a ride on the back of a utility vehicle. It wasn’t until the driver noticed Riana on the back of the vehicle and described her as being in a troubled state. Riana was then taken to a psychiatric hospital in Goulbourn, Australia.
As mentioned before, Mark stayed in Wangaratta while Jacoba arrived in Yass. But as further investigation was made, Jacoba was also found in a perturbed state and Mark was questioned by the police.
Jacoba was taken to the same psychiatric hospital where Riana was taken. Mark gave the forbidden finger to nearby photographers as he was being taken away by police authorities. The Tromp case lasted from August 29, 2016 to September 3, 2016.
When further investigation was made, it was revealed that the Tromp’s hadn’t been diagnosed with any mental illness. They didn’t take any form of drugs, they didn’t have any owed debts, and they didn’t belong to any religious group. There may be no logical reason as to why the Tromp’s did what they did, but Sgt. Knight put it at best: “This is just a massive meltdown, I’m sure of it”.