Local News

Missing Fayetteville man, 86, found alive in swamp

Posted August 22, 2011 12:00 a.m. EDT
Updated August 23, 2011 7:30 a.m. EDT

— An 86-year-old Fayetteville man who was reported missing Sunday evening was found alive in a swampy area near his home, authorities said Monday.

Family members said that Troy Alphie Cashwell, who has a medical condition that causes him to become lost and confused, went missing around 11 a.m. Sunday from his home at 985 Cashwell Road.

Faye Wrench, Cashwell's daughter, said her father often walks around the neighborhood, where many of their family members live, but never wanders far from home. So when there was still no sign of Cashwell by 7 p.m., the family called authorities.

Cashwell was dehydrated and disoriented when he was found by a county rescue squad around 4:30 p.m. Monday, authorities said, so he was taken to Cape Fear Valley Hospital to be checked out. 

Wrench said her father had used a stick to try to crawl out of the mud, but he remained stuck.

"My dad is a pretty strong-willed person, and you know, he doesn't give up easy," she said. 

Severe thunderstorms brought heavy rainfall and frequent lightning to Cumberland County Sunday night, upping concern for Cashwell's wellbeing. When Wrench got the news that he had been found, she cried with relief. 

"I was so happy and thankful," Wrench said.

Doctors told Wrench that Cashwell should be able to return home from the hospital by the end of Monday night, she said.

The North Carolina Center for Missing Persons issued a Silver Alert for Cashwell early Monday morning.

Developed in 2007, Silver Alert is a system to quickly notify the public about missing endangered adults who suffer from dementia or other cognitive impairments, such as Alzheimer's disease.

It also allows caregivers and nursing homes to report a person missing. In the past, only a family member could report an adult missing.