SPANISH LAKE, MO (KTVI)-- The search for a missing man with Alzheimer`s disease crossed a critical threshold Friday night.
R.V. Mandrell, 82, had been living in a guesthouse just steps away from his son`s front door in the 1700 block of New Jamestown Road in the Spanish Lake area of North St. Louis County.
But on Tuesday, sometime between the breakfast he ate and the lunch he did not, he disappeared.
"He was sort of like the greeter at Walmart," said his son Scott Mandrell. "Every time someone showed up he was always here and he welcomed them so everybody knew him."
Sadly, R.V. Mandrell no longer knew them.
He is in the final stages of Alzheimer`s, but more frail of mind than body so he is capable of walking pretty far.
Late Wednesday, someone thought they saw spotted him at the intersection of Vaile Avenue and Talisman Way, about five miles from his home, in a rural part of north county, dressed in more than the undershirt and boxer shorts he was wearing when he left.
"He was spotted wearing a light jacket and a red ballcap," Mandrell said. "The hope is if we don`t find him today is that the community as a whole keeps their eyes open and takes an extra walk past their tool shed or their lawn mower garage."
Family, friends and neighbors have been passing out flyers and poking around in wooded areas, hoping the survival instincts R.V. developed growing up in farm country might be keeping him alive.
But they also know Friday they are crossed a critical threshold.
"Now that we are over 72 hours, for someone to be out on their own like that without food or water, it is getting to be desperate," said Jason Duensing, a volunteer searcher.
R.V. Mandrell is 5` 6' and 155 pounds.
At one point police dogs picked up his scent on the pavement but lost it very suddenly giving rise to speculation he may have gotten a ride.
If you think you have seen him, call St. Louis County Police.
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