Family organizes search in Blue Springs for missing woman - KCTV5

Family organizes volunteer search in Blue Springs for missing woman

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Desperate family and friends organized a search for a missing 72-year-old woman. Dozens of volunteers fanned out Thursday night.

The staging point was Blue Springs Assembly of God Church on Northeast Duncan Road. Hellen Cook walked away from her vacation home near Warsaw last Saturday.

Family members believe she was trying to make her way to Buckner, where she and her husband, Howard, live or Blue Springs where she attends church and has strong community ties. Hellen Cook suffers from Alzheimer's and has not taken her medication since last weekend.

She had wandered away several times in recent weeks and found her way to Blue Springs in all of those cases.

But because there have been no confirmed sightings of the woman in Jackson County, the sheriff's office has declined to undertake a search.

Hellen Cook was last seen about 11:30 a.m. Saturday near Walnut Grove and Hensley Road in Benton County. This is just southwest of Warsaw in Benton County.

Eleven police canines indicate that Hellen Cook walked to the intersection of Cold Springs Avenue and Highway 7, authorities say. The dogs lose the scent at that point, indicating that she got into a vehicle.

An eyewitness reported seeing someone matching Hellen Cook's description get into a newer model black Ford F-150 about four miles south of Lincoln on U.S. 65. This occurred about 3 p.m. Saturday, which was less than four hours after she was last seen.

A family member said someone may have seen Hellen Cook at the QuickTrip near West 72nd Street and Wornall Road in Waldo on Monday.

Police and the family reviewed surveillance video Wednesday afternoon, but it was only inside the convenience store. The woman matching Hellen Cook's description was spotted outside, and never came inside.

Family members also are planning a search on Saturday.

They are asking volunteers to come to the Blue Springs Assembly of God Church from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. They will be having staggered starts during the two-hour window.

Authorities said she will likely not recognize her name, nor will she be able to speak in complete sentences.

Her family is desperately worried, knowing that she is confused and disoriented. She may have been without food, water and shelter this entire time. She is physically fit and walks up to seven miles daily.

Hellen Cook is described as 5' tall and 97 pounds with hazel eyes, and short brown or auburn hair. She was last seen wearing blue jean shorts, a white T-shirt and tennis shoes. She was also carrying an extra pair of boots, and a walking stick.

Anyone with information is asked to call Benton County authorities at 660-438-9555.

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