After hours long search, missing Hamden man, 78, found safe

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HAMDEN  — A 78-year-old Hamden man, who suffers from dementia and had been reported him missing around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday has been found safe and sound.

Just after noon Wednesday, police received a call from a resident of nearby Tom Swamp Road, Dr. David Katz, who alerted the police that he had been hiking through the woods, searching for Kingsley Birdsall, and found him sitting on a rock and relatively alert.

Hamden searchOther than asking for water, Dr. Katz, an Internist for Yale – New Haven Hospital, said Birdsall had very few complaints. He accompanied the doctor slowly out of the woods, a trip that took about an hour, before the doctor thought it was best to have emergency medical crews take him the rest of the way.

Birdsall’s wife, Pamela Elliott, told police she had left for work early Tuesday morning and when she got home her husband was nowhere to be found. Elliott said her husband always sticks to his daily routine, enjoys gardening and walking their large wooded property.

The Silver Alert was first issued Wednesday morning by Hamden police. Silver Alerts are issued by law enforcement agencies for missing people of all ages. Amber Alerts are issued for children who are believed to be in danger.

Elliott, who has been battling her own health issues, said, “I am tongue tied. I don’t know what to say. I am dumbfounded.” She and her husband will celebrate their 28th wedding anniversary in May.

Hamden Police, with the assistance of the Hamden Fire Department, conducted the search, focusing on the heavily wooded area surrounding Julian Drive, in the northwestern part of Hamden. Emergency crews used several search dogs and all-terrain vehicles to aid in the search. The Connecticut State Police’s Trooper 1 was dispatched in the sky just after 9 a.m.