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Missing Woman: Shirley Hunt - TX - 06/19/2007


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#1 Kelly

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 06:51 PM

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Shirley Hunt

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Classification: Endangered Missing Adult
Date of Birth: 1935-06-15
Date Missing: 2007-06-19
From City/State: Henderson, TX
Missing From (Country): USA
Age at Time of Disappearance: 72
Gender: Female
Race: White
Height: 64 inches
Weight: 120 pounds
Hair Color: White
Eye Color: Hazel
Complexion: Light

Glasses/Contacts Description: Glasses with gold wire frames and blue edges.

Identifying Characteristics: Pierced ears, partial dentures, previously broken leg (as a child).

Clothing: Long sleeve blue shirt over a white shirt with black trim, light denim culottes, brown "White Mountain" loafer slip on shoes.

Jewelry: Pearl and diamond ring, gold ring with approximately 7 diamonds.

Circumstances of Disappearance: Unknown. Shirley was last seen at approximately 3:00pm leaving her residence on foot in the vicinity of the 8700 block of County Rd 454 South in Henderson, TX. Shirley suffers from Alzheimer's disease and may need medical attention.

Investigative Agency: Rusk County Sheriff's Office
Phone: (903) 657-3581
Investigative Case #: 07008984


Print a Poster: http://www.projectja...ShirleyHunt.pdf


Family website:  findshirley

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.



#2 Kelly

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 06:59 PM

http://www.kltv.com/...701199&nav=1TjD

6/23/07-Rusk County
Hundreds of Volunteers Search For Missing East Texas Woman

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The search continues Saturday for an East Texas woman suffering from Alzheimer's.  Shirley Hunt, 72 has now missing for five days. Hunt's family is pleading for the publics help in finding their mother. Hunt was last seen Tuesday, taking a walk along a county road near her home, just outside of Henderson.  Since then, hundreds of volunteers have been looking through miles of wooded brush along County Road 455.

Search and Rescue volunteers plan out another acre of thick woods Saturday to send a crew on.  It's the fifth solid day of searching for Shirley Hunt.

"She has Alzheimer's, and she's probably very disoriented, and she hasn't eaten," said Hunt's daughter Kim Vaughn.  "She had not eaten anything that day, and she just needs to be found."  Volunteers of Search and Rescue have combed through acres and acres of land since Tuesday, sometimes checking places twice, even three times, but they say they've seen no sign of the senior citizen.  Hundreds of people have searched a total of 25 square miles on foot, on 4-wheelers and even by airplane.

"The community, everybody has just gone above and beyond what we as a family could have hoped," says Vaughn.  Rusk County authorities say they've exhausted every available resource and are now asking you to keep your eyes open.

"If you have any information, contact the Rusk County Sheriff's Office immediately," says Crime Prevention Officer Brian Bathke.  The family says they think she may have gotten into a car with someone, asking for a ride to either Henderson or Amarillo, where one of her daughters lives.

"We just feel certain she's no longer in this area, she has to be outside of our area or this community would have found her by now," said Vaughn.  But that isn't stopping these volunteers.
"Till she's found, we'll be here," says Henderson Search and Rescue Unit Chief Larry Thomas.




http://www.kltv.com/...707344&nav=1TjD

6/25/07-Longview

Rusk Missing Woman Search In Sixth Day

Another day, Monday, in the effort to find a missing east Texas alzheimer's patient, and it, again, has ended without success. Often in a constant, gloomy rain, Rusk county search crews have now covered every field, every dirt road, every grid on the map, around where the woman disappeared last Tuesday.

"She was last seen at the junction of 454 and 453 off of 79 south" said Rusk County Sheriff Deputy David Roberson.

 "Just not knowing the ending, we just really want to get out there and give relief to the family" said Veronica Betts, of the Community Emergency Response Team , or CERT.

 72 year old Shirley Hunt, an alzheimers patient, was last seen walking near her Rusk county home on county road 454. Hundreds of volunteers have searched on foot, on horseback, 4 wheelers even by air, but no signs.

"Friday we had a turnout of over 100 people 4-wheelers horseback trucks" Roberson said.

"We'd just rather be out there and keep on searching but there is a time that we just have to quit and pass it on to someone else" Betts said.

 It was at a point on county 454 that searchers say 3 separate tracking dogs lost hunts scent, leading investigators to believe that right here she was picked up by someone.

"People on the ground walking, 4-wheelers spent many a man hour there, and we think we have done all we can do" said Rusk county sheriff Glen Deason.

Now search organizers say, time has run out.

"We've done all we can do we have exhausted all of our resources" Deason said.

"I just wish we could have gave them a little more closure" says Roberson.

The case has been entered into the national clearing house missing persons web site, in hopes that somewhere someone knows where Shirley Hunt is.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#3 Kelly

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 07:06 PM

http://www.news-jour...sing_woman.html

Henderson woman missing six days

By RANDY ROSS

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The ground search for Shirley Hunt ended Sunday night, five days after she walked away from her home near Henderson and disappeared. Authorities no longer believe she is in the area and hope a media blitz will result in someone finding her.

Hunt, 72, has Alzheimer's disease, a disease characterized by the deterioration of the thinking and reasoning processes.

Kim Vaughn, Hunt's daughter, said Hunt left her home near U.S. 79 and CR 454 in Good Springs around 3 p.m. Tuesday to go for a walk. Vaughn's father began looking for Hunt about 15 minutes later and was unable to find her. After almost two hours of searching, the family contacted the Rusk County Sheriff's Office for help.

"It was nothing out of the ordinary for her to walk," said Brian Bathke, a crime prevention officer for the county.

The search for Hunt has been a massive effort. Sheriff's officers began searching the area around the home Tuesday night, and a helicopter with thermal imaging flew over the area. On Wednesday morning another helicopter and bloodhounds joined the search. The dogs picked up a scent leading through woods and stopping at CR 453.

Bathke said the search has used a Department of Public Safety helicopter, a private airplane, Texas Department of Correction dogs, mounted patrols from several local agencies, private four-wheelers and several hundred people on foot. He said the search had covered an area between 25 and 30 square miles.

The sheriff's office headed the search until late Thursday, Bathke said, at which time the Henderson Fire and Rescue Department took over the search. The department had more training and manpower to lend to the search, he said.

The department closed its search command post Sunday night.

Vaughn said the authorities now are confident that Hunt got in a vehicle with someone and is no longer in the immediate area. The sheriff's office has listed Hunt as a missing/endangered person, and the family is contacting media to help spread word of the disappearance.

"Hopefully, the right person will see her," Vaughn said.

The family also has contacted Texas EquuSearch, a Houston/Galveston-based organization, for assistance.

Cindy Wisdom, an EquuSearch case manager, said the organization has listed Hunt on its Web site but is not actively involved in the case. She said the family already has a great amount of resources.

"We are spread so thin," Wisdom said.

Texas EquuSearch was involved in the search for Jessie Davis, 26, of Ohio, whose body was found Saturday morning. Wisdom said she and others had just returned from Ohio and would soon begin work on other cases.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#4 Kelly

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 07:10 PM

http://www.tylerpape...EWS01/706270311

Posted on Wednesday, June 27, 2007ÂÂ

Woman Went Missing On 'A Good Day'

By STEPHANIE JETER
Staff Writer

GOOD SPRINGS - Enough time has passed since Shirley Hunt was diagnosed with Alzheimer's that she no longer recognizes her daughter.

The disease's progression took the 72-year-old's appetite, replaced it with confusion and gave her the propensity to wander.

Those were all private woes until Mrs. Hunt went missing from her Good Spring's home last Tuesday, said daughter, Kim Vaughn.

Now, they're some of the only facts the Rusk County Sheriff's Office has to bring Mrs. Hunt home.

Mrs. Vaughn said the Tuesday her mother went missing had been a "such a good day."

"She was clear-headed, knew who I was and what I had been doing," Mrs. Hunt said. "She hadn't recognized me since last October."

Though Mrs. Vaughn said her mother had the tendency to leave the house on unaccompanied walks - on that day, her mother had stayed put.

A normal day meant Mrs. Hunt would have already slipped out three or four times, she said.

But it's always easy to find her: "She just walks straight. She doesn't know how to come back home," Mrs. Vaughn said. So, when Mrs. Hunt leaves for a walk, husband, Bobby Hunt, drives to meet her, Mrs. Vaughn said.

"Then sometimes he has to follow her in the car for another 10-15 minutes," she said. "Until she got exhausted, she wouldn't get in the car with you."

But that Tuesday, Mrs. Hunt was still. A bit of her personality had peaked from behind the disease.

"We let our guard down," Mrs. Vaughn said.

And Mrs. Hunt left the house.

Hunt went to pick her up "but she wasn't there," Mrs. Vaughn said.

The search with law enforcement started almost immediately.

Over the past week, groups have combed about 25 square miles on foot, on horseback, on four-wheeler and from the air.

"Nothing's been found," said Darryl Norris, chief deputy with the Rusk County Sheriff's Office.

With U.S. Hwy. 79 so close, Mrs. Vaughn thinks her mother might have caught a ride to Amarillo, where family lives.

Amarillo law enforcement has been informed.

Norris said a tip came in recently that Mrs. Hunt may be in Cherokee County.

Until the tip pans out, Mrs. Vaughn said she and Hunt will visit area hospitals and shelters with the hope that Mrs. Hunt is being taken care of.

"It's horrible," Mrs. Vaughn said. "Somehow you go on. You just have to."

Mrs. Hunt is described as a white female, around 5 feet 4 inches, 165 pounds with white hair and hazel eyes.

Call the Rusk County Sheriff's Office at 903-657-3581 with any information.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#5 Kelly

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 07:13 PM

http://www.ktre.com/...725081&nav=2FH5

06/28/07 - East Texas

Missing Alzheimer's Patient


The family of a 72-year-old woman with Alzheimer's missing for a week says she might have hopped in a passing car in an effort to get to Amarillo. In a story on the Henderson Daily News' Web site Monday, Shirley Hunt's daughter says her mother has talked recently about visiting her sister in Amarillo.

Rusk County Sheriff's Department deputies and hundreds of volunteers have searched the area near her home by foot, horseback and A-T-V.  Planes and helicopters have also flown over the area, with no sign of the woman.

Hunt is 5-foot-4 and weighs about 120 pounds. She has white hair. She was last seen wearing a white shirt with black trim, a blue pullover, denim culottes and brown shoes. She does not have her purse or billfold with her. ÂÂ

Shirley Hunt, 72-year-old Alzheimer's white female, missing since Tuesday, June 19 from her home on County Road 454 South, Henderson, Rusk County, Texas.  Shirley suffers from Alzheimer's.  It is believed that Shirley was spotted in the New Summerfield area (20 miles southwest of Henderson) on Saturday night.  When she left home she was wearing a long-sleeved blue shirt over a white shirt with black trim, light denim culottes and brown loafers.

Anyone with information about Shirley, please call the Rusk County Sheriff's office at 903-657-3581.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#6 Kelly

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 07:21 PM

http://www.henderson...3missingwed.txt

6/29/07

Shirley Hunt spotted in Cherokee County

By ALEXA DUKE
Henderson Daily News

Shirley Hunt's family has hope again. A store employee in New Summerfield said he is reasonably confident the woman he spoke to in his parking lot Saturday night was the missing 72-year-old Alzheimer's patient.

“He described everything she was wearing,” said Hunt's daughter, Kim Vaughn, this morning. “He said he spoke to her and it scared her. Then he saw her digging through the trash. He didn't see her picture until Monday and he worried about it all night. He told somebody (he thought it had been her) who told somebody who knew my uncle, Ray.”

Although Rusk County Sheriff's Office deputies showed the store employee a photo of Hunt, he told them he was “pretty confident” it was the missing woman but that he couldn't swear to it.

Vaughn said when her father took a recent photo out to show the man that he positively identified Hunt as the woman he saw Saturday night around 10 p.m.

“He said she looked good, she didn't look destitute,” Vaughn said. “He kept talking about her hair and we all feel confident that was her. He said there's not a lot of women like that in that area anymore.”

Hunt has snow white hair that is rather distinctive, her daughter said.

The family is not worried about Hunt digging through the trash, since she has done that at home on occasion.

“She digs through the trash here,” Vaughn said. “If you ask her what she's doing she'll say, ‘Just seeing what's here.'”

RCSO Chief Deputy Darryl Norris said he sent deputies to New Summerfield to check with the store employee and to distribute missing person flyers in both English and Spanish throughout the area.

“We're asking the plant farm owners out there to check all their buildings,” Norris said. “And we're asking anyone who thinks they see Mrs. Hunt to please call law enforcement in their area immediately. Don't wait. With Alzheimer's, it may scare her if they try to lay hands on her, but they should try to keep her in one spot or keep on eye on her, keep her in sight.”

Norris said officials are still watching for scavenger birds flying in the area where Hunt initially went missing, but is encouraged that they've not seen any.

“We're hoping this will get everyone looking for her again,” Norris said.

Hunt disappeared while walking near her home on County Road 454 in western Rusk County the afternoon of June 19. When last seen, the 5-foot 4-inch, 120 pound woman was wearing a white short-sleeved shirt with black trim topped with a lightweight terry cloth, long sleeved blue shirt and light denim Capri pants or culottes. She was wearing brown White Mountain shoes and was not carrying a purse.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#7 Kelly

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Posted 10 July 2007 - 01:41 PM

http://www.tylerpape...EWS01/707100313

Rusk County Woman With Alzheimer's Still Missing

By STEPHANIE JETER
Staff Writer

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

GOOD SPRINGS - Missing Rusk County woman Shirley Hunt hasn't been seen by family since Alzheimer's caused her to wander from home June 18.

She's been given the title of "missing," but that's not to say she hasn't been spotted by area locals.

One Cherokee County man said he might have seen her digging through a trash bin, but he waited two days before alerting police, said Rusk County Sheriff Chief Deputy Darryl Norris.

A second possible sighting of the 72-year-old was reported in Concord, but it took three or four days before that tip was reported, he said.

Because of passed time, the trails from both were cold.

"That's what's hurt us before," Norris said. "We're still telling people to keep their eyes open."

But instead of holding the information, he asked that those tips be phoned in immediately.

Every piece of information shared with police is valuable, Norris said, but the fresher the clue, sometimes the more successful the find.

It's what Mrs. Hunt's family continues to hope for.

Mrs. Hunt was last seen about a half-mile from home walking along a rural road, said her daughter Kim Vaughn.

After days of organized searches using helicopters, search dogs, four-wheelers and multiple teams on foot, she said nothing was found that could lead to her mother's recovery.

The family unit has done everything to bring Mrs. Hunt home, she said, yet "we don't know what to do and where to go next."

Mrs. Vaughn has spent days on the Internet, e-mailing Mrs. Hunt's photo to every police department in the state.

She and family members check hospitals and shelters for a "Jane Doe" that is really Shirley Hunt.

Mrs. Vaughn spends hours traveling by car, "just looking at stores to see if she's sitting on a bench somewhere."

The family recently offered a $10,000 reward for Mrs. Hunt's safe return or recovery.

Mrs. Vaughn even purchased a book specializing in missing persons.

The book suggested she send a self addressed envelope to all county coroners with a description of her missing loved one. The idea of what the return mail would say makes her hope she wasted the postage.

"But until something else comes up - to get closure - you're really just kind of stuck," she said. "You can't stop looking and you can't stop worrying."

Mrs. Hunt is described as a white female, around 5 feet 4 inches, 140 pounds with white hair and hazel eyes.

Call a local law agency or the Rusk County Sheriff's Office at 903-657-3581 with any information.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#8 Kelly

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Posted 11 July 2007 - 01:07 PM

http://www.palestine...eadpicturestory

Published: July 11, 2007 01:25 pm

Search continues for missing elderly woman

By PAUL STONE
The Palestine Herald

Authorities continue to search for a 72-year-old female Alzheimer's patient who has now been missing from her Rusk County home for more than three weeks.

Shirley Hunt, 72, who resides in the Good Springs community, approximately 10 miles southwest of Henderson, was last seen walking near her home on Rusk County Road 454 around 3 p.m. on June 19.

The Good Springs community is approximately 1 mile southeast of U.S. 79.

In addition to suffering from Alzheimers, family members say Hunt has several other medical problems.

Hunt is a white female with white hair and stands approximately 5-4. She was last seen wearing blue jeans and a white shirt with a blue, long-sleeved shirt over it.

Family members are offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to Hunt's safe return and/or recovery.

A convenience store clerk in New Summerfield  which is located on U.S. 79 in Cherokee County between Henderson and Jacksonville  believes he spoke to the woman on June 23. By the time he saw a news report concerning her disappearance, however, four days had passed.

Family members have driven U.S. 79 from Henderson to Palestine and also traveled as far as Conroe and Cleveland in efforts to locate their loved one.

For two days, hundreds of volunteers searched the Good Springs area on foot near the woman's home, while others searched on horseback and four-wheelers. Those efforts, however, came up fruitless.

A team of dogs from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice also unsuccessfully searched the county roads in the area of the missing woman's home.

A telephone call made to a representative of the Rusk County Sheriff's Office by the Herald-Press early Tuesday afternoon was not immediately returned.

Anyone with possible information concerning Hunt's whereabouts should call the Rusk County Sheriff's Office at 903-657-3581.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#9 Linda

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Posted 07 August 2007 - 11:59 PM

http://www.tylerpape...EWS01/708080303

Equusearch To Help In Missing Person Search

August 08, 2007

GOOD SPRING - Timelines are important when searching for a missing person. The linear calendar keeps law enforcement aware of every update and every dead-end lead.

But since 72-year-old Shirley Hunt was reported missing June 18, her daughter yearns for the timeline to end.

She wants her mother found.

In a perfect world, Mrs. Hunt would walk back into the family's living room the same way she walked out, but daughter Kim Vaughn said she knows her mother's advanced Alzheimer's makes that wish unlikely.

That's why Mrs. Vaughn said every search is important.

The area around Mrs. Hunt's home has been combed three and four times over by law enforcement, but this weekend a new group will pick up the search.

Texas Equusearch is bringing its crew and expertise for a Saturday and Sunday ground search using horses, ATVs and groups on foot.

"We're gong to start from scratch," said Texas Equusearch's office administrator Cheryl Lawless. "A lot of times people miss things. We're going to see if we can't get some answers for this family."

And they need more volunteers. Those interested should meet 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at Goodspring United Methodist Church at 8659 County Road 454 South in Henderson.

Ms. Lawless said Texas Equusearch will give volunteers a crash course in searching and send groups out.

Last weekend, the group searched the Longview area for missing Brandi Wells, last seen Aug. 3, 2006.

Mrs. Vaughn said her family joined the search.

"We will try to do that from now on. We know what they're going through," she said.

Though the search for Ms. Wells turned up items of interest, she said nothing could immediately close the case.

She knows the same thing could happen with her mother's search, but said even if the event is unsuccessful, it will bring a small sense of peace.

"We'll either find her or we'll know for certain that she's not out there," she said. "That's the good thing about it. They know how to do these searches. We'll have an answer one way or another."



#10 Linda

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Posted 11 August 2007 - 07:47 AM

http://www.tylerpape...EWS01/708110317

Team Looks For Missing Rusk Woman

August 11, 2007

HENDERSON - Area volunteers and the specialty search team Texas Equusearch will meet 8 a.m. Saturday to look for missing Rusk County woman Shirley Hunt.

Mrs. Hunt, 72, of Good Spring was reported missing June 18. It's believed her advanced Alzheimer's caused her to wander from home, her family said.

Daughter Kim Vaughn said her mother had wandered before, but in the past, Mrs. Hunt only walked in a straight line, making it easy to bring her home.

But when family went to retrieve her in mid-June, Mrs. Hunt was nowhere to be found.

After the first missing persons report, the Rusk County Sheriff's Office coordinated several days of ground and air searches using ATVs, helicopters and search dogs.

No strong leads were discovered, the sheriff's office previously said.

Additional volunteers for the search are needed, she said. Those interested should meet at 8 a.m. Saturday at Goodspring United Methodist Church at 8659 County Road 454 South in Henderson.

The same schedule will be followed Sunday.

#11 Linda

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Posted 12 August 2007 - 05:55 AM

http://www.tylerpape...EWS01/708110357


Search Continues For Missing Woman With Alzheimer's

August 12, 2007


GOOD SPRINGS - A four-wheeler growled to life at Good Springs United Methodist Church Saturday as a group of search volunteers tossed a series of questions back and forth.

They needed a plan, a joint strategy for the some-odd-25 volunteers collected at Texas EquuSearch's command center to search the surrounding woods and county roads for missing Rusk County woman Shirley Hunt.

Answering the most inquiries was the missing woman's daughter, Nanette Simmons. She had been there since the beginning, back when Mrs. Hunt, 72, wandered from home on June 18.

Many of the searchers' questions focused on Mrs. Hunt's advanced Alzheimer's.

"Could she have gone past this road?" asked volunteer Jan Tipps from Alvin. She pointed to a map marked with red, black and blue markers. Each colored line represented the trails searchers already checked.

"I don't think so," Mrs. Simmons said. "Daddy always said she always walked the other way, but that's not to say she didn't go then ... that one time."

That one time, Mrs. Hunt's husband, Bobby Hunt remembers well.

He was sprucing up the yard.

The family home, with its white windows and light yellow siding, was visible from the group's meeting spot.

"I was weed eating, my daughter (Kim Vaughn) was mowing," he said.

When it came time for a break, Hunt said his wife was gone, presumably off on one of her Alzheimer's triggered wanderings.

"I drove up and down 79, up and down 454, I drove all over," he said.

Thirty-five minutes later, he said the sheriff's office was at his front door, triggering a massive ground and air search.

Nothing was found, he said.

But that was then, Mrs. Simmons exhaled.

On Saturday, Texas EquuSearch, a trained and mounted search team, gathered members from across the state for Mrs. Hunt's search.

She said the disappointment doesn't get easier, though each search brings a renewed hope; each day brings possibility.

She spoke of an international prayer chain lifting up her family and the friends who have gathered around to soothe the pain.

And though false leads hurt at the time, she said "it's encouraging that people are looking."

Mrs. Simmons lives in Amarillo.

Back when her mother first disappeared, she said family worried that Mrs. Hunt was trying to walk to Mrs. Simmons' West Texas town.

"Mother used to call and say, 'I'm so thirsty to see you,'" Mrs. Simmons said.

"Yesterday, I started thinking, 'Shirley, I'm so thirsty to see you.'"

She and family called every hospital in Texas. They've visited shelters, mailed letters to county coroners and e-mailed everyone they know.

Having tried so much, Mrs. Simmons said "we worried we were running out of things to do." It made Saturday's search so much more important.

A second search starts 8 a.m. Sunday at Good Springs United Methodist Church at 8659 County Road 454 South in Henderson.

Volunteers are needed.

To help with the search for Shirley Hunt contact Texas EquuSearch at 281-309-9500 or visit http://www.texasequusearch.org/.

Shirley was last seen wearing light denim coulottes, a white shirt with a blue long sleeved shirt over it and brown loafer shoes.

#12 Linda

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Posted 14 August 2007 - 04:53 PM

http://www.palestine..._226150109.html

County ponders Project Lifesaver



PALESTINE — Anderson County commissioners apparently are considering the funding of a program which would assist law enforcement officials in finding “wandering” Alzheimer's patients.

During Monday’s regular monthly meeting, the Anderson County commissioners’ court heard a presentation from Jamie Huff of the Alzheimer’s Alliance of Northeast Texas Inc. concerning the organization’s Project Lifesaver Program.

The Project Lifesaver Program is designed to help rescue teams locate Alzheimer’s patients who have wandered from their homes or designated places.

Those who are part of the Project Lifesaver Program wear a personalized wristband that emits a tracking signal. When caregivers notify law enforcement officials that the person is missing, a search and rescue team responds to the wanderer’s area and starts searching with a mobile locator tracking system.

The Project Lifesaver wristband is a 1 ounce battery-operated wrist transmitter emitting an automatic tracking signal 24 hours a day. The signal is tracked on the ground or in the air over several miles.

“It (the wristband) emits a signal every 30 seconds,” Huff told the court.

Each wristband has a unique radio frequency, so the search team is able to positively identify the appropriate missing person, according to Huff.

If approved, Huff said the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office would have to be equipped with “digital receivers.” She told commissioners the initial cost of the program would be $10,000, with some of that total defrayed by proceeds from the Alzheimer’s Walk.

“The sheriff (Greg Taylor) is wholly behind the program, but they do not have the money to buy the receivers and the training,” Huff said.

Shirley Hunt, a 72-year-old Rusk County resident who suffers from Alzheimer’s, has been missing from her residence approximately 10 miles southwest of Henderson since June 19.

Approximately 60 percent of Alzheimer’s patients will develop the tendency to wander, according to Huff. If an Alzheimer’s patient becomes missing, their chances of survival drop to 50 percent if not found within the first 24 hours.

On average, Huff said it takes rescue teams 22 minutes to find a missing Alzheimer’s patient wearing the bracelet.

The average cost of a Project Lifesaver bracelet is $275. There is also a $10 monthly fee to cover costs of maintaining the battery and wristband.

Some counties offer “scholarship programs,” according to Huff, to help families pay the costs associated with the bracelet and the program.

“It’s really up to each county how they fund the program,” Huff said.

Precinct 4 Commissioner Randy Watkins pointed out there have been “a minimum of six” Alzheimer’s patients in Anderson County this year who have wandered from their residences for various periods of time.

“I think it would be very important — if the court sees fit — to do this,” said Watkins, indicating that he has a family member suffering from Alzheimer’s. “I think it would be a wonderful program for us to be involved in.”

#13 Kelly

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Posted 03 September 2007 - 07:26 PM

Shirley is on Project Jason's 18 Wheel Angel campaign. A special poster has been made for her and can be downloaded and printed for placement. More information about the program, and the link for the poster can be found here:

Project Jason - Assistance for families of the missing

In addition to the campaign, Shirley is also featured in a trucking publication called Through the Gears. This free magazine is distributed in truck stops nationwide and has a circulation of about 150,000.

Through the Gears is one of JB Scott's many publications. In partnership with Project Jason, they feature two missing persons per month. You can pick up your free copies at a local truck stop, but if it's far from you, you may want to call and ask if they carry that magazine. These are NOT with the regular for purchase magazines.


You can also see the current campaign information on this JB Scott webpage: 18 Wheel Angels

We hope this helps in the search for Shirley.

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#14 Denise

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 12:44 PM

Hunt's family's fears, frustrations grow over missing mother

October 29, 2007
By ALEXA DUKE
Henderson Daily News

It's frustrating beyond words to not know if your loved one is alive or dead. The family of Shirley Hunt has tried everything they can think of to help find the missing 72-year-old Alzheimer's patient and frustration doesn't begin to cover their emotions.

“We just don't know where to go from here,” said Hunt's daughter, Kim Vaughn.

Recently, Vaughn's frustration began to overflow when she kept seeing accounts in the media of the uproar over a dog comedienne and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres had adopted. She sent an e-mail to every national media outlet she could find.

“Over the last few days I have become more disturbed about the media and the things they chose to cover,” Vaughn wrote on Oct. 19, four months to the day after her mother walked away from her Good Springs-area home.

“On June 19, 2007 my mother, who suffers from Alzheimer's, went missing from her home. As of today, she is still missing. We pleaded with the national media to show her picture just one time. To our repeated request no one responded. But, let Ellen have a problem with the dog she adopted and it is splashed all over the media for days.

“It is a shame that in America a dog is worth more than a human life. I am sure that everyone knows what Ellen's dog looks like but no one knows what my mother looks like. All we are asking for is just a few seconds - just her picture in the national spotlight so maybe someone will recognize her. Just a few seconds is all we are asking for. Does Shirley Hunt not deserve to have her picture in the national spotlight just as Ellen's dog?”

As of Friday, Vaughn had gotten no response from anyone she sent the note to.

The e-mail was just one more in a string of efforts from the family to do what they can to locate Shirley Hunt. They have driven hundreds and hundreds of miles, checked every hospital they could find and sent faxes to others to see if any unidentified women had been brought in, they have called in search parties and psychics, and have contacted the state about putting out a “silver alert,” a new program begun after Hunt's disappearance that is similar to the Amber Alert for children.

“I looked at the silver hair alert and emailed the Texas Department of Public Safety about it,” Vaughn said. “The person has to be reported within 72 hours. I think we are past the 72-hour time frame! They said they could not put her on the alert.”

But the family is not giving up.

“The United Response Team from Midlothian with the cadaver dogs will be coming sometime after January,” Vaughn said. “They are a group that specializes in finding Alzheimer's patients. After speaking to them they feel certain that Mother is no longer in our area and that a truck driver probably picked her up thinking they were helping.”

The Rusk County Sheriff's Office continues to follow up on any leads that come in, but mostly they're chasing down rumors, trying to find a source for some of the more outlandish stories. They recently asked that hunters keep an eye out for anything unusual as deer season opens.

“We just want to remind folks to be on the look out,” said Rusk County Sheriff's Office Lt. Ken Logan. “We still have a missing person in the county and if they run across anything out of the ordinary, they need to call us.”

Logan recommended checking progress of efforts to locate Hunt at the Web site for the National Center of Missing Adults at .

“We have no reason to believe this is anything other than a missing person,” Logan said. “This is not a criminal case and there are no ‘suspects,' we just want people to be on the look out.”

Anyone who sees anything that might be helpful in the search or thinks they may have seen Hunt is asked to call the Rusk County Sheriff's Office immediately at (903) 657-3581.

News Editor Alexa Duke can be contacted via email at county@hendersondailynews.com.

#15 Denise

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 12:45 PM

Hunters asked to hunt for Shirley Hunt

October 1, 2007
By ALEXA DUKE
Henderson Daily News

It was a hot, muggy afternoon when 72-year-old Shirley Hunt disappeared from her Rusk County home on June 19.

Now autumn is here and, with no word of the missing Alzheimer's patient and no sightings or leads, county officials are asking area hunters to keep a close eye out when they head into the woods in coming weeks.

“We just want to remind folks to be on the look out,” said Rusk County Sheriff's Office Lt. Ken Logan. “We still have a missing person in the county and if they run across anything out of the ordinary, they need to call us.”

Hunt has been the subject of exhaustive searches of the area around her home on County Road 454 with no success. A Web site has been set up to chronicle efforts made to find the wife and mother at . Friends and family members have followed every lead and every rumor and have driven across most of the eastern half of Texas in their search. It has been hard on everyone who knows and loves Hunt.

“I wake up every night around midnight and stay awake thinking about where she might be and if she is OK, and going over in my mind what I can do when it gets light to find her,” daughter Kim Vaughn said. “Late in the evening the thought that another night is coming and still we have not found her sets in and helplessness overtakes me.

During the daylight hours when I am able to search it helps to pass the hours.”

Texas Equusearch, a mounted search unit based in the Houston area that conducts searches across the country, came to Rusk County in August to coordinate another effort with no success.

Logan recommended checking progress of efforts to locate Hunt at the Web site for the National Center of Missing Adults at .

“We have no reason to believe this is anything other than a missing person,” Logan said. “This is not a criminal case and there are no ‘suspects,' we just want people to be on the look out.”

Anyone who sees anything that might be helpful in the search or thinks they may have seen Hunt is asked to call the Rusk County Sheriff's Office immediately at (903) 657-3581.

News Editor Alexa Duke can be contacted via email at county@hendersondailynews.com.


#16 Linda

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 10:13 PM

Today marks the one year anniversary of Shirley's disappearance.... Our thoughts and prayers remain with her family that she will be found safe...
God Bless.



#17 Linda

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 10:15 PM

http://www.tylerpape...EWS01/806190323

Relatives Searching For Wife, Mother One Year Later

June 19, 2008

GOOD SPRINGS — Last June, Bobby Hunt was weeding his yard along County Road 454 in Good Springs, when his wife of 51 years simply walked away. Shirley Hunt, like many Alzheimer’s disease patients, was known to wander.

“She couldn’t have been gone long,” Hunt said, estimating 30 minutes at most.

When she couldn’t be located the Hunts called the police.

That was one year ago today. At first, blame was circulated. Family questioned what could have been done, what wasn’t done. None of that matters now, because the 73-year-old mother and grandmother still has not returned home safely.

Three ground searches and thousands of missing posters have yielded few leads.

“One day I feel like Shirley is out there somewhere … the next day I feel like Shirley is dead,” her husband said.

During deer hunting season, the family waited, fearful of bad news.

“We were kind of relieved when no one called,” he said. “We thought for sure if she had walked on in the woods someone would find her.”

His hope now is to get his wife’s picture on national television and, by chance, someone would recognize her face.

Rusk County Sheriff’s department investigators said Mrs. Hunt is still an open and active missing person’s case, although few new leads are coming in.

“We’re following up on everything,” said Rusk County crime prevention officer Brian Bathke.

Mrs. Hunt’s family has taken an active role in her search. In September, Kim Vaughn, Mrs. Hunt’s daughter, drove to New Mexico, stopping at all police stations, hospitals and shelters along the way, leaving missing posters and telling anyone who would listen about her mother.

In March, the Hunt family drove to Houston to look in homeless shelters. Hunt said their best hope is for her to be staying in a shelter.

“People with Alzheimer’s cannot make it on the street,” he said.

A year ago, search dogs tracked her scent about a quarter of a mile south on CR 454 — then there was nothing. The scent stopped. With U.S. Highway 79 so close, Mrs. Vaughn thinks her mother might have caught a ride to Amarillo, where family lives.

“My gut instinct is that she got out there on the highway and someone picked her up,” Mrs. Vaughn said. “People see an elderly person walking in the heat and they’ll stop to help. Whoever picked her up thought they were helping, they just didn’t know.”

Police followed up on several calls from people saying they saw her. The woman they all saw was not Shirley Hunt.

“It was eerie to see her,” Mrs. Vaughn said, “because from about 100 yards away she looked just like my mother.”

False leads have not discouraged her. She says it’s because one day the right lead will come along.

“You just don’t know when it will be the right person,” Mrs. Vaughn said.

She finds some comfort knowing that people still remember her mother, and continue to look for her.

Mr. Hunt remembers his wife as a good mother, friend and neighbor. This August will be their 52nd wedding anniversary.

“As far as I’m concerned we’re still married,” he said.

Before the Alzheimer’s, Mrs. Hunt was an active member of South Side Baptist Church in Henderson, a skilled seamstress and an avid canner who was known for her dill pickles.

She made big southern dinners on Sunday with roast and potatoes, and was quick to offer help to a neighbor in need.

“She was a wonderful mom,” Vaughn said. “Just because it was a year ago it doesn’t make any difference. We need closure.”

So far, efforts to bring national media attention to her mother’s disappearance have been unsuccessful.

“No one seems interested,” Hunt said.


PROJECT LIFESAVER

Recently, Mrs. Vaughn wrote a letter to former Speaker of the U.S. House Representatives Newt Gingrich, a member of the Alzheimer’s Study Group, which was established by Congress to develop a National Alzheimer’s Strategic Plan.

Almost 20,000 elderly residents in East Texas suffer from Alzheimer’s.

“With the growing number of Alzheimer’s patients they need to have a national program for senior citizens who go missing,” Mrs. Vaughn said.

In Texas, the Silver Alert allows the Texas Department of Public Safety to send messages to law enforcement agencies and media in the state when an elderly person who is physically impaired goes missing.

While Mrs. Vaughn says that program is wonderful, she thinks it needs to go a step further. She would like to see all counties with Project Lifesaver.

Project Lifesaver tracks and monitors Alzheimer’s and dementia patients 24 hours a day. The patient wears a wristband, about the size of a watch, containing a 1-ounce, battery-operated radio transmitter that emits an automatic tracking signal.

Each client has a specific frequency and if they turn up missing, the caregiver can call 911 and alert authorities that the person is a member of Project Lifesaver. Law enforcement can then search with an antenna and listen to the intensity of the signal as they move to locate the missing person.

The average time of recovery has been less than 30 minutes.

“Project Lifesaver needs to be nationwide, not just in counties that can afford to buy it,” she said.

Since Mrs. Hunt’s disappearance, Project Lifesaver has come to Rusk County. The Henderson High School class of 1954 — Mrs. Hunt’s graduating class — raised half of the money to get the project started.

Mrs. Hunt is described as a white female, around 5 feet 4 inches, 120 pounds with white hair and hazel eyes. A $10,000 reward is offered for information leading to Mrs. Hunt’s whereabouts. Call the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office at 903-657-3581 with any information.

#18 Linda

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 05:10 PM

http://www.kltv.com/...5&nav=menu117_2

Posted Image Posted Image

Search Continues For Shirley Hunt One Year Later

06/19/08

She's been missing for a year, as of Thursday. Still, an east Texas family holds on to the possibility that their loved one will return home.

You may remember, 73 year old Shirley Hunt went missing from her home a year ago today. Hunt suffered from Alzheimer's Disease, and was never found.

She was last seen walking on County Road 454 near her home in Good Springs, south of Henderson.

Now, KLTV 7 News' Lakecia Shockley talks to Shirley's daughter about the year-long search for her mother.

"I go home a different route, and I come a different route, and when I come I think she's just going to be standing there one day waiting, saying, 'Where have y'all been, I've been looking for y'all."

For Kim Vaughn, looking down the street where her mother disappeared seems unreal.

"She didn't have a purse. She was just an elderly person walking and I just think that somebody picked her up and was trying help her and take her wherever she said she wanted to go, and there's no telling."

But, Kim and her family still hold on to the possibility of finding her.

"It's been a year but you know that day is no different from any other day for us. We continue to search, and follow leads and try to find somebody out there."

Over the past year Lieutenant Kenneth Logan and search volunteers have desperately tried to find Shirley.

Despite no real leads, Logan says he'll never give up the search.

"I've know Mrs. Hunt for a long time," he says. "A lot of folks have know Mrs. Hunt, and they love her...You never know when that lead is going to come up and is going to be the right one that you need...and is going to bust it wide open and we're going to find her."

Kim Vaughn still believes Shirley will be found. "My gut feeling is that she's out there. We just have not made the right contact with the right person that knows where she is."

For the Hunt family, it's one thought that keeps them going.

"That she's out there and if we give up, there's nobody to keep going."

Vaughn has written a letter to Congress. Her goal is to get a national program formed for elderly Alzheimer's patients who go missing.

If you have any information about Mrs. Hunt's whereabouts, you are asked to call the Rusk County Sheriff's Department.

#19 Kelly

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Posted 08 October 2008 - 11:12 PM

Family Blog: http://missingshirley.blogspot.com/

Print a Poster: http://www.projectja...ShirleyHunt.pdf

Kelly Murphy, Mother of Missing Jason Jolkowski
President and Founder,
Project Jason
www.projectjason.org

Please help us in our mission as a 501 c 3 nonprofit: http://projectjason....y-campaign.html

If you have seen any of our missing persons, please call the law enforcement agency listed on the post. All missing persons are loved by someone, and their families deserve to find the answers they seek in regards to the disappearance.


#20 La Vina

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Posted 08 August 2009 - 08:15 AM

http://www.news-jour...Cold_Case_.html

Search for elderly woman garners national attention
By Jamaal E. O'Neal
Saturday, August 08, 2009

When Bob Hunt marks 53 years of marriage Tuesday, it will not be a golden moment shared with his wife Shirley Mac Hunt.

"I miss her," Hunt said. "I just wish I knew what happened. I just want to know where she is and if she's safe."

Hunt said it has been more than two years since he last saw his wife — who suffers from Alzheimer's disease — at their residence in Good Springs.

He and his daughter had been outside doing yard work at his home southwest of Henderson, Hunt said. "When I came back inside the house she was gone."

Despite a weeklong search through forests, swamps and cattle pastures, search crews and law enforcement officials were never able to find her.

"We haven't seen her since," Hunt said. "But we've never forgotten. I still think that she's out there, and I want to bring her home."

Since her disappearance, family and close friends have kept their promise to search for Shirley Hunt, even consulting a psychic to find her whereabouts.

Now one national organization hopes to keep her case from being forgotten.

Volunteers with Wilmington, N.C.-based Community United Effort's Center for Missing Persons will be in Henderson on Aug. 20 to shed light on the Shirley case.

Founded in 1994, the nonprofit group provides support services and search efforts to families of missing people.

Organization founder Monica Caison said the Henderson stop is part the group's sixth annual On the Road to Remember blitz through 23 southeastern U.S. cities. She said the purpose of the campaign is to call attention to missing, unidentified people and unsolved homicide cases that have gone cold during the last five years.

"We want to provide a story in the hopes that it renews interest in the community," Caison said. "We are reminded of the overwhelming numbers of unsolved cases across the county, and we want to put Hunt's case to the forefront in the Henderson community."

Shirley Hunt, 72 at the time, was last seen on June 15, 2007, around U.S. 79 and CR 454 wearing light denim culottes, a white shirt with a blue long-sleeved shirt over it and brown loafer shoes.

Rusk County Sheriff's investigators say they have not closed the case and are still investigating tips that come into the office. Anyone with any information on Shirley's whereabouts should call the Rusk County Sheriff's Office at (903) 657-3581.





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