One Month Later, Authorities Still Searching For Woman

BERLIN — Nearly one month to the day since she was first reported missing, the search continues this week for an elderly Berlin woman with dementia and short-term memory loss last seen at her residence near South Point on Memorial Day.

Memorial Day is a fading memory and the Fourth of July is just around the corner as the summer races along and the search continues for Helen Stephanie David, 77, of South Point, who was reportedly last seen at her residence on Carefree Drive around 3 p.m. on May 27.

Shortly after midnight on Tuesday, May 28, the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office received a missing persons report on David from her son, Ryan Putney, who told police he had last seen his mother at her South Point home around 3 p.m. the day before.

In the month since David’s reported disappearance, an extensive search has been conducted in the South Point area and along the Route 611 corridor on the ground, by air and in the water and marshes to no avail. At the height of the search, local law enforcement agencies were assisted by the Civil Air Patrol and search and rescue teams from as far away as the western shore and an army of civilian volunteers combed the woods and properties around South Point during the day and at night using flashlights.

About two weeks ago, the private sector Delaware Search and Rescue K-9 group, which has a strong track record of locating missing persons with a history of dementia, memory loss and Alzheimer’s, was recruited to lend their expertise to the search but turned up no new evidence. In the meantime, the search continues and electronic message boards are still posted along Route 611 on the route to Assateague and South Point urging residents and visitors to be on the lookout for the elderly Berlin woman.

This week, the search is continuing with a renewed focus on the waterfront areas and marshes around South Point and the Route 611 corridor in the hopes of finding new evidence.

“We are going to search the shoreline with Natural Resources Police and a cadaver dog this week,” Worcester County Sheriff’s Office spokesman and Lieutenant Ed Schreier said this week. “We have followed up on all leads of possible sightings. We have searched the South Point area several times by foot, boat and air with negative results. Unfortunately, we are unable to locate her.”

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