Facts of the situation:
· Hellen Cook took a walk on 7/13/13. We have not had a confirmed sighting of her beyond the 4 mile one-way walk since that day.
· The early morning of 7/14/13, dogs tracked her scent 4 miles to Highway 7 in Warsaw where they believe she got in a car with someone.
· Several of her personal effects were found 7/25/13 next to a pond located a few hundred yards off her scent trail. 5 divers searched the pond on Saturday, 7/27/13. They have stated that with 99.9% certainty that she is not in the pond.
· We now don’t know if she went to the pond on her walk prior to getting to Highway 7 or if she simply turned around at Highway 7, followed her same path back, became disoriented and went to this pond instead of continuing on the road back to the camper.
Strategy – we are continuing a 2-prong approach to finding Hellen Cook.
· Localized search – dogs are back in the woods around the pond. The dog handler worked the area yesterday, and thinks he needs two more days to finish searching the entire area. Weather is delaying this portion of the search. Equestrian search parties will be coming back in with mules as soon as weather permits as well.
· National search – We have the national facebook campaign to try to get her face in all 50 states, but we are looking for more national coverage. We are seeking national press for three reasons:
We want Mom’s face recognized by as many as possible across the nation. Stories are coming in regarding Alzheimer’s patients being found several states away weeks after their disappearance. We are still hopeful.
We want to highlight the plight of Alzheimer’s to other families so they won’t have to face this
We have been frustrated as a family with what to do when a loved one goes missing. It is becoming our personal missions to
develop a guide for what a family should do when a loved one goes missing, and
ensure police procedures are developed for handling missing person cases.
We want to give tips to other families should this happen to them and also issue a call to action for law enforcement to create procedures. We cannot locate a law enforcement agency in Missouri that has procedures for what to do in a missing person scenario. We are, in fact, told that there cannot possibly be a procedure for handling missing person cases. We are still hopeful that some guidelines exist, but our search has not yet been productive.
The family asks that everyone please share her picture and plight. More information may be found on the family’s community facebook page at www.facebook.com/FindHellenCook.
Anyone who may have seen this woman or with information is asked to call Benton County authorities at 660-438-9555.
Missing since Saturday 7-13-13
· Warsaw, Mo on Highway 7
· Wearing jean shorts, light-colored shirt
· Was carrying a stick and boots
4 feet, 10 inches
If you see a tiny, petite woman who appears disoriented, please call 911 immediately.