Missing 71-Year-Old Alzheimer's Patient

September 1, 2008
Escondido/San Diego County

by Grace Manues.

Members of RMRU aided San Diego Search and Rescue in a large-scale search for a missing 71-year-old woman suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. This mutual aid call-out involved SAR Teams from San Diego, Riverside, Orange, San Bernardino and Los Angeles Counties. Over one hundred trained volunteers -- on foot, horse, and all-terrain vehicles -- spent thousands of hours over the course of many days looking for the petite, physically fit woman who enjoyed long walks in her gated neighborhood of well-tended, family friendly homes.

Searchers covered miles, going from door-to-door, as well as scouring scrub covered ravines, golf courses, empty schools, commercial establishments, and open space areas; anywhere a disoriented individual might go. Escondido PD issued a reverse 911 call to alert residents to the plight of the missing resident. Air support was also utilized. All to no avail. The whereabouts of Mrs. Lopes is still a mystery.