Concerns were mounting Friday about the welfare of a 73-year-old woman with cognitive problems who drove away from her Hemet home three days ago and whose vehicle was found abandoned nearly 20 miles away, with no sign of her.
Rosario Garcia vanished Tuesday afternoon, after saying she was heading to Hesperia to visit family members, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.
Garcia left her residence in the 26000 block of Katherine Street at the wheel of her gray 2016 Nissan Altima, license No. 8-J-N-V-9-8-0, sheriff’s Sgt. James Burton said.
“Family members reported Garcia is possibly suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia,” Burton said.
The Nissan was located shortly before noon Thursday in the 70-100 block of Highway 74 in Mountain Center, 19 miles east of Hemet, according to the sergeant.
“Volunteers from the Riverside Mountain Rescue Unit and the Desert Search & Rescue Unit responded with bloodhounds … to the location of the recovered vehicle,” he said. “A search of the area is currently being conducted.”
A sheriff’s helicopter crew has also been scouring the location, according to Burton.
Garcia is Hispanic. She is 5 feet 2 inches and 165 pounds, with brown hair and eyes. She wears prescription glasses and was last seen wearing a brown shirt, blue jeans, bracelets and gold rings.
Anyone with information was urged to contact the San Jacinto sheriff’s station at 951-766-2400.
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