Acts of Kindness
State trooper spots missing elderly man in snowy ditch and carries him to safety
The senior with Alzheimer's had wandered away from his home on a winter day, and his family was frantic. Thankfully, a heroic trooper found him when he did.
Irene Markianou
01.17.23

Winters in Maine are known to be very cold, snowy, and wet.

Temperatures during the day can be as low as 12 degrees F, which makes it quite uncomfortable to move around, especially for elderly citizens.

Unsplash - Dina
Source:
Unsplash - Dina

Last year, an 82-year-old man went missing in the heart of winter, when temperatures were at their lowest, and the whole state was covered in snow.

The elderly man, who also suffers from Alzheimer’s disease, left his home and started wandering in the snow-covered streets around his property in Vassalboro, Maine.

YouTube - CBS Boston
Source:
YouTube - CBS Boston

When the man was spotted wandering away from home, the local police were called in order to help find the senior and help him return home safely.

In fact, it was a plow truck driver who saw him first and they waved at each other.

The driver thought that the man was fine since he waved at him.

YouTube - CBS Boston
Source:
YouTube - CBS Boston

82-year-old Bernard Perry is known to wave at everybody, so this wouldn’t have caused any worries normally, but at 5 am in the morning, in such cold weather, it was clear that the man needed help.

“Mr. Perry is a waver,” one of the man’s neighbors told CBS News. “He’s a great guy, always smiling and waving,” the woman added.

YouTube - CBS Boston
Source:
YouTube - CBS Boston

So, early in the morning on that cold December day, Trooper Tyler Harrington started searching for the missing senior, starting from the spot where he had last been seen by the plow truck driver.

He shined his flashlight towards the roadside, and thankfully, spotted the missing man in a ditch.

Since the elderly Alzheimer’s patient could not walk, Trooper Harrington carefully scooped him up and carried him to the police car.

YouTube - CBS Boston
Source:
YouTube - CBS Boston

“It was still dark, I’d shine my light off the roadway, and there Mr. Perry was,” Trooper Harrington told CBS News. “The road was so icy; I didn’t want to fall with him in my arms,” Harrington added.

The trooper took the elderly man into the police car and waited with him until an ambulance arrived.

Soon, the first responders came and took Perry into an ambulance and drove him to the nearest hospital.

Facebook - Maine State Police
Source:
Facebook - Maine State Police

Mr. Perry was suffering from severe hypothermia and frostbite, but otherwise, he was doing fine.

In the days that followed the incident, he was recovering in the hospital with his life not being in danger – but it’s only because he was found when he did.

A video of the trooper carrying the elderly man in his arms was posted by Maine State Police on Facebook and it soon went viral with more than 250k views.

Facebook - Maine State Police
Source:
Facebook - Maine State Police

People kept praising the trooper for being so alert and eager to help an elderly citizen in need.

They even called Harrington a hero.

“Thank you trooper Harrington so very much from the bottom of my heart. This is my grandfather. I can’t thank you enough for saving him,” one of Perry’s grandchildren wrote in the comments.

YouTube - CBS Boston
Source:
YouTube - CBS Boston

Thanks to the readiness of the trooper and his colleagues in the local police department, Mr. Perry’s story had a happy ending.

You can see Harrington talk about the incident in the video below!

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

By Irene Markianou
[email protected]
Irene Markianou is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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