Family Reels After Married Dad Vanishes for 16 Years, Reappears Gay


Eric Myers: Return Brings Lawsuit, Fresh Pain

"I know how much I love my children," said Ruggiano. "And if he loved me even half as much as I loved them, there would be no situation where he would ever think that it was okay to leave me."

Ruggiano has only glimpsed her father once since he returned. She has not spoken to him.

When Liberty Life Insurance, the company that had paid the death benefit, learned that Eric Myers was alive, they successfully sued the Myers family for the $800,000 plus interest, and the family is now appealing -- another reason why Myers' return has thrown the family into emotional turmoil.

"It almost hurt more to have him come back than it did for him to go in the first place," said Ruggiano.

Despite the painful consequences, Myers insisted he made the right decision to return.

"To live in a disguise is a horrible prison," said Myers.

To Ruggiano, her father saying that he left because he was gay does not make up for all of the years lost.

"I know a lot of people who would never do this … absolutely never blame it on their homosexuality. I don't believe that he is capable of love," said Ruggiano.

Watch the full story on "20/20: I Escaped My Life" TONIGHT at 10 ET.

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