An elderly woman with severe dementia is reported to be missing in Chilliwack, and searchers are combing the city for any sign of her.
Ethal (Grace) Baranyk, 86, has been missing from her home since about 10:30 a.m. on July 13, according to several social media posts in Chilliwack. The area of her home is Lenora Crescent, but she has now been missing for 24 hours and is known to be able to walk quite far.
Chilliwack Search and Rescue began their search on Saturday, and continued on Sunday.
By Sunday morning, a group of searchers began gathering on their own at McDonald’s in downtown Chilliwack. Armed with a map and highlighters, a cell phone for updates, and a growing stack of donated flyers of Baranyk, search organizer Lisa Bisschop marked down where people could search, and had searched.
The Staples in Sardis donated a stack of 150 flyers to help with the efforts.
By this time, Baranyk has missed vitamins and crucial medications. She is likely to have spent overnight outside or hidden in someone’s shed or garage, searchers worried. They wondered out loud with each other if she could be hiding in ditch or other natural hideaway.
She goes by the first name Grace, and is a smoker. Searchers are asking people to recall if an elderly woman has asked for a cigarette yesterday or today. They are also hoping bus drivers may have noticed her.
Anyone who has seen her is asked to call the Chilliwack RCMP. A BC Silver Alert was issued on Saturday, and several people have been searching the area on their own to find the woman.
A Facebook page has been set up to help find her, where people are sharing sightings of the woman. Some people say they saw her around noon near Townsend Park.
They are also asking everyone in the area to help out by checking over their property in places where a child may hide. She was last wearing navy pants, a grey sweater and pink-framed eyeglasses.
Chilliwack RCMP non-emergency number is 604-792-4611.