‘Total superheroes’ praised for finding missing man, 86
- Credit: Charlotte Bond
Two strangers saved the life of a missing man with dementia after finding him in a field, hours after he went missing.
Volunteer community first responder Liz Quickenden and NHS worker Sue Patterson joined forces to help find 86-year-old John Cooper who had gone missing from his home in Woodbridge.
Mr Cooper, who had recently been diagnosed with dementia, had gone missing shortly after 3pm on Saturday, October 24.
Mrs Quickenden was off shift at home in Tunstall when she read news of the Mr Cooper’s disappearance later that evening.
“It’s really bizarre, there’s no reason why I went,” said Mrs Quickenden.
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“I don’t know what caused me to get up. It was just fate or God.”
Meanwhile, Ms Patterson, from Melton, was thinking of the missing man after and her family had come had spotted him walking along the road earlier in the day.
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“I thought it was an odd place to cross the road,” said Ms Patterson.
On hearing he had been reported missing she realised she must have been one of the last people to see him, so contacted 101.
“It didn’t sit well with me,” said Ms Patterson. “I couldn’t stop thinking about him.”
Concerned about his welfare the two women started chatting online and decided to meet in Woodbridge.
They began walking in the area where Mr Cooper was last seen, close to the A12 while police and rescuers looked elsewhere in the area.
“For whatever reason the traffic stopped and we heard him,” said Mrs Quickenden.
“We heard him shouting.”
By the time they found Mr Cooper, lying in a field next to the road, he had been missing for more than seven hours.
Mrs Quickenden believes that if the traffic had not stopped the pair might never have found him.
They were able to look after him until emergency services arrived.
Mr Cooper has since recovered but the experience will remain with the two women.
“I absolutely cannot believe we found him,” said Ms Patterson.
Mr Cooper’s family are incredibly grateful for the pair’s help in finding him.
His great niece, Theresa Theobald said the pair were “total superheroes” and had continued to ask after him over a week on from the incident.
“It’s just brilliant that they found him really,” said Miss Theobald.