When sixteen year old Samantha Wilcox is abducted, the BAU suspects her estranged father, ex-con Eddie Lee Wilcox, is responsible for the kidnapping. Garcia uncovers evidence of communication between Samantha and her father detailing Samantha's frustration with her mother and desire to leave her small town. As Eddie's criminal history evolves from robbery and car theft to sociopathic killing sprees, the team believes his goal to escape is fueled by his desperation and desire to finally have a healthy relationship with his daughter. Eddie begins to unravel and it becomes clear that Samantha is unaware of Eddie's dark past. After the team discovers that Eddie's father committed suicide when he was a child and never followed through on his plan to take Eddie on a road trip via Route 66, they are able to track down Eddie and Samantha at the end of the same route in Santa Monica. Put in a corner, Eddie takes Samantha hostage, but JJ is able to talk him down and convinces him to release her. Meanwhile, Hotch is admitted to the hospital for internal bleeding resulting from his previous stabbing at the hands of George Foyet. As Hotch's life hangs in the balance, he experiences visions of his ex-wife Haley telling him to let go of the past and focus on his present life. Hotch ultimately chooses to embrace the present and reconnect with Jack and Beth.