New Castle News

September 6, 2013

A happy ending as missing woman is found

By Staff
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — There was a happy ending Thursday in an incident that could have been a tragedy.

Betty Richardson, 77, of Catalina Drive, walked away from her home after midnight Wednesday. By mid-day Thursday, Neshannock police and firefighters were looking for her, assisted by volunteer fire crews from New Wilmington and Mahoning Township.

Personnel from Noga Ambulance used an ATV to search nearby woods, helicopters were sent up over the area around Richardson’s home and a dog was used to try to pick up the woman’s trail.

Richardson was found by two residents of Kings Chapel Road, which runs perpendicular to Catalina.

Lauren Hasson of 1380 Kings Chapel Road said she had gotten up at 1:40 a.m. with her baby. She heard the door bell ring, she recalled, but said she was afraid to answer it.

Hasson said she had looked out, but didn’t see any cars and, thinking it might be kids, didn’t answer the door.

When her neighbor, Bruce Anderson of 1434 Kings Chapel, arrived home from work Thursday, his wife, Caroline, told him about the missing woman. She suggested he use his ATV to look for her.

Anderson’s search came up empty, but when Hasson told him about the door bell ringing, the two headed out on foot behind Hasson’s house.

When he entered the woods, Anderson said, he spotted Richardson lying in a depression in the ground. She was wearing her night clothes and a green jacket.

He helped her up, walked her out of the woods, then called 911.

Anderson said she looked terrific, considering she had spent the night in the woods.

Safety officials said they had been told Richardson, who suffers from dementia, had wandered off before.