MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — An 81-year-old woman with a dementia-related illness has been found alive in a ravine after a night of searching, according to the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office.
On Monday evening, the sheriff’s office received a report of an elderly family member missing from the 22000 block of Everts Road NE in Hagali Township, which is about 19 miles northeast of Bemidji.
The family told authorities that the elderly woman had been alone for around 10 minutes when family members discovered she had wandered off.
Family and neighbors looked for about an hour before calling Beltrami County’s 911 center and reporting the woman missing. The initial search, which included deputies and a K9 team, was unable to find the woman.
A larger search party, including family, friends, neighbors, deputies, Minnesota State Patrol troopers, Minnesota DNR officers and Polk County deputies equipped with a forward looking infrared was initiated and they searched throughout the night. Air support wasn’t available due to inclement weather.
At around 7:40 a.m. a neighbor reported locating the elderly female about 1-and-a-half miles away from where she went missing. She was found in a wooded ravine that she fell into and couldn’t get out.
Deputies found no obvious signs of injury, but the woman was treated for hypothermia. She was alert and talkative. She was taken to an area hospital for treatment.