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Two women with intellectual disabilities found alive despite 5 days in freezing temperatures

By Elizabeth Delaney
|
February 28, 2023

Two Maine women with intellectual disabilities have been found alive despite being lost and running out of gas in below-freezing temperatures. Their ordeal lasted nearly a week.

Lost on the way to the mall

Kimberly Pushard, 51, and Angela Bussell, 50 just wanted to enjoy a few hours of bowling at the Maine Mall in South Portland on Feb. 21, but they got confused and got lost for five days, according to the Daily Mail.

To make matters even more concerning, it is the dead of winter where the intellectually challenged women live, and temperatures were hovering around 15 degrees Fahrenheit.

The mall is roughly one hour away from there they live.

The women became confused regarding how to get to the mall and ended up in Massachusetts.

Pushard and Bussell reach out for help

Fortunately, they had the presence of mind to call home to try to get some help, according to Boston local news.

Family tried to give them some assistance for how to get home, but the women still didn't arrive home when everyone thought they would.

Since the women still had difficulties finding their way, and they called the Exeter, New Hampshire Dispatch center.

When that didn't work for them, they managed to get in touch with a New Hampshire state trooper, who directed them to take I-95 north.

By this time, a "missing vulnerable person alert" had been issued, and the emergency situation allowed police to implement tracking techniques via the signal from the cell phone the women were using ,and area cell towers to assist with determining the location of the women, according to WGME.

That information alerted police that they had been in the Candia, New Hampshire area.

The following day, police received information that the vehicle had been seen at the Marden's in Lincoln, Maine.

Then on Feb. 25th, Topsham police said they believed the women were near Nicatous Lake in East Hancock, Maine.

Stuck on a snowmobile trail

The women turned off of Morrison Ridge Road and drove ten miles down a somewhat secluded snowmobile trail.

Their vehicle got stuck there and ran out of gas, which meant they had no heat when it was 15 degrees Fahrenheit outside.

Fortunately, this story has a happy ending in that the women were finally found alive by Game Warden Brad Richard on the afternoon of Feb. 26th.

Richard claims the find was "dumb luck" in that he wasn't originally planning to look where he found the women. He saw tire tracks and decided to follow them, according to the Daily Mail.

Family was relieved and thankful that the two women had been found alive.