Red beret comes up trumps

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by northumbrian_k, Mar 15, 2018.

  1. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    711
    Male
    Newcastle
    Eight o'clock at night and I am trying to persuade our dog to go out for a toilet break when I hear a beep as the front door is opened followed by the clang of the garden gate. My wife has gone out unannounced. I get the lead and coat on the dog and wait a short while for her return, which she will probably do if she can't see us in the usual place. But she doesn't, so I take the dog out anyway but there is no-one about on this cold, dark night and my wife is nowhere to be seen. I return home but she is not there. I go out again for a few minutes to check a couple of other likely places, leaving a note in case she comes back. No luck. By now it is after 8:30 and she could be anywhere. Worse, if she goes too far she will not remember how to get home. Memories of someone who went missing in the local area and was found in the river days later come flooding back. I am calm and not seriously worried yet but it is time to call in the professionals.

    As soon as I mention that she is a vulnerable adult with dementia the support officer on 101 takes her disappearance very seriously. I give all the details they need including her description and what she is wearing, not forgetting her distinctive red beret. Yes, she has a small amount of money and a travel card in her bag. No, she hasn't got a mobile phone and couldn't use one if she had. An officer is on the way here to take more details. I am to stay put.

    Within 25 minutes I see a car outside the door and someone wearing a red beret getting out. The female police officer had spotted my wife's hat as she drove up our street. Apparently she was making her way home after going out for some 'fresh air'. We'll never know for sure where she has been, but that hat of which she is so fond has done the trick and the police - whose response has been first class - can stand down. This kind of excitement I can do without.
     
  2. Philbo

    Philbo Registered User

    Feb 28, 2017
    644
    Male
    Kent
    Hi

    What a worry - glad it all turned out okay.

    May be worth enquiring with your police authority to see if they do a vulnerable person registration scheme? (though I would like to think that having had this issue, they would have offered but you never know).

    Last year, whilst attending our local Age UK carer's support monthly coffee afternoon, I got talking to a PCSO from Kent Police. He was there to raise awareness of such a scheme run by them, and gave me a registration pack to complete.

    Basically, it gathers a whole heap of information about the vulnerable person, including a recent photo and includes questions about where the person has lived previously, old haunts, schools attended etc (all the sorts of places that a PWD may be trying to find?),

    The scheme is designed so that in the event of you reporting the person missing, they can retrieve all of the relevant information, this saving time and effort of sending someone round and can therefore start searching more effectively. It was described to me as effectively creating a ghost missing person report, ready for activation.

    Thankfully, I've not had to see how effective it is yet.

    Best wishes.
    Phil
     
  3. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    How frightening for you! I am so glad that your wife was found quickly, safe and sound. Yes, that red beret sounds very helpful - and, even better, she wears it without prompting.
     
  4. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,025
    Female
    Chester
    Really pleased for you that the red beret helped find her

    Just a thought, if she likes it so much, have you got a spare one hidden away in case it gets lost, or can you find a similar one somewhere.
     
  5. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,828
    Male
    North Manchester
  6. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    711
    Male
    Newcastle
    Not another red one but she has got bright yellow, green and blue.
     
  7. Risa

    Risa Registered User

    Apr 13, 2015
    483
    Essex
    Can you take custody of the money and the travel card so that your wife can't get too far? Maybe worth investing in a tracker as well. We ended up doing this when we had a couple of instances of Mum going awol as we were scared of what might happen.
     
  8. Rolypoly

    Rolypoly Registered User

    Jan 15, 2018
    2,319
    Thank heavens for the red beret. Glad it turned out ok and quickly.
     
  9. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    711
    Male
    Newcastle

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