How ECSO searches for missing people and what caretakers can do to help

Local News

ODESSA, TEXAS (Big 2/ Fox 24)- It’s a heartbreaking feeling, a loved one with Dementia or a Behavioral Disorder going missing.

“You’re lost I want to get out there and help them but I don’t know what to do,” says Sgt. Gary Duesler with the Ector County Sheriff’s Department.

He says there are ways to stay prepared in case of emergency and ECSO explains how that information helps them create a search map.

“They can help us immensely by just keeping up with a current photograph, make a notation of their medications or something so that when they call us we can go out and have a better idea of what we are looking for. Did he walk with a limp, did he have a cane, did he walk with this that or the other? Why would that be pertinent? Because we can sit there and go ‘well within an hour he probably could have based on his condition only gotten this far here we think’ everything is speculation anyway but you’ve got to start somewhere.”

Duesler also reminding the public about a life-saving program called Project Lifesaver and how it can especially help in cases like these.

“It’s basically just a wristband that goes on that patient’s arm through a series of tracking devices if they’ll call us within 30 minutes of them noticing being gone we have 100% success rate on finding these people.”

According to ECSO, not a lot of people know about the program; at one point only had 8 people using it and now they are hoping more caretakers will look into the program.

“It’s quite a program but there is nothing quite like finding somebody’s relative and they’re alive and they’re safe and we get them back in their arms again, it can be quite touching.”

The best part is that Project Lifesaver is free to the patient. Caretakers can visit ECSO and provide them with documentation of their condition, the project runs off of donations.

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