On May 21, at approximately 1:20 p.m., the Cheyenne Police Department responded to a call of a missing person. Sammy Bates, (82), of Cheyenne, had left his home at about 8:30 a.m. and had not returned by the early afternoon. Bates suffers from Alzheimer’s and officers began looking for him in the Cheyenne area as well as notifying Laramie and Albany counties to look for him. At approximately 7:00 p.m., Bates was located by Wyoming Highway Patrol in his vehicle near Wamsutter. Bates had driven to Wamsutter and thought he was driving to work. Bates was transported to Laramie by the Highway Patrol and an off-duty CPD officer met Bates and the trooper in Laramie and returned Bates to his home in Cheyenne.
This incident highlights the utility of Project Lifesaver. Project Lifesaver is a program for helping to find people who have a medical condition that may cause them to wander. Project Lifesaver is a collaboration between the Cheyenne Police Department, Laramie County Sheriff’s Office and Wyoming Search and Rescue. Participants in the program range from children with developmental disabilities to elderly adults with dementia and Alzheimer’s. Participants in the program wear a tracking bracelet which can be used to identify their position. If that person then goes missing, officers use analog radio telemetry trackers to locate the missing individuals. There is no cost to the program and those interested in signing up can contact Officer Juschka at 307-633-6647 to discuss eligibility.