HUDSON–On Sunday, October 30 at 10:50 a.m., Hudson Police received a report from a mother at Bliss Towers, North Second Street, that her 16-year-old autistic daughter was missing.
The girl was last seen in their apartment when she went to bed around 7 p.m. Saturday. The mother awoke to find that her daughter was not in her room.
Police immediately conducted a search in, and around the area of Bliss Towers with no results. Video tape revealed the girl had left Bliss Towers around 5:50 a.m. She was wearing a Halloween costume, and was carrying a small bag. Police said very few leads were developed, and searches around the city revealed no results.
At 7:15 p.m. a command post was established at the Hudson City Fire Department’s Central Station in an effort to further organize and expand the search. State troopers from Troop K, including a K-9 tracking unit; Sheriff David Bartlett and Columbia County Sheriff’s deputies; a representative from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; a State Police investigator from their electronic communications unit; two forest ranger/ground search experts; Fire Commissioner Tim Hutchings; Hudson Fire Chief James Schermerhorn, his staff and about 40 volunteer firemen; fire police and their equipment—all joined in effort.
Ground searches were conducted around Oakdale and Underhill ponds, along the river, wooded areas, cemetery, city alleys and streets.
Hudson Police detectives and officers followed up on leads, as the word of the search continued to spread.
At 9:35 p.m. the missing girl returned to her apartment at which time she was met by police as well as her mother, who brought her to Columbia Memorial Hospital for a medical examination. She did not appear to be cold or injured. The entire circumstances surrounding her disappearance and eventual return are under investigation.
“I am extremely pleased she is safe and not injured. People familiar with autism know how this could have had a completely different outcome. The cooperation displayed by emergency services was noteworthy. I was most impressed by our 40 or more volunteer firefighters who showed up in force on a Sunday night to find this young person. All Hudson citizens should be proud of these dedicated volunteers,” Hudson Police Chief L. Edward Moore said in a press release.
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Trooper goes above and beyond
AUSTERLITZ—A trooper from the New Lebanon barracks was dispatched to assist an Austerlitz man after his dog had been hit and killed on State Route 22, October 4 at about 6 p.m.
Upon Trooper Louis E. Godfroy, IV, arrival, he was met by a 92-year-old Austerlitz man who reported that his Golden Retriever had wandered away from his River Road home and had been struck by a car. Trooper Godfroy assisted the owner by returning the dead retriever to the man’s home.
Although the owner did not ask for further assistance, Tr. Godfroy recognized that due to the man’s physical limitations, he would not able to properly bury his dog. On October 5, when Tr. Godfroy was off-duty, he returned to the River Road home and buried the man’s beloved dog.
According to a press release, State Police have a long history of serving the citizens of New York since 1917. Their mission to serve the people of New York has remained constant from the beginning. “Trooper Godfroy helped a member of our community with compassion, courtesy and professionalism by taking the initiative to help the elderly couple with the loss of their family pet,” said the release. –Diane Valden