SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego Police are reminding families who may care for an at-risk loved one to have a plan if they become lost.
Officers said Saturday that a woman named "Lupe" disappeared from her home recently and was lost before a neighbor who noticed her called police.
SDPD Southern Division officer McClain responded to the call and stayed with Lupe as other officers searched the area to try and get her back home, according to police. An officer eventually found a residence with an open door, which was Lupe's home.
Instead of transporting her back home in a police vehicle, and possibly confusing or scaring the woman, SDPD said McClain, "figured it was time to get his steps in and walked Lupe back to her residence." There, she was reunited with her family.
SDPD said the incident highlighted the need for families to make sure loved ones with medical or mental issues have an ID bracelet with their basic information, address, and emergency contact if they become lost.
The Alzheimer's Association says families can prevent a loved one from wandering away from home by identifying times they are likely to wander and plan activities, ensure basic meets are met, use devices to signal when a door or window opens, and regularly supervise them.
The group says families can plan for the possibility of someone wandering away from home by asking neighbors to call if they see the person alone, know where a person could likely go to if they leave the home alone, and familiarize themselves with the neighborhood and any possible hazards there may be.