HONOLULU (KHON2) — A Mililani woman is pleading for help in finding her missing father who suffers from dementia.
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According to Honolulu police, 79-year-old William Burr was last seen leaving his home on Monday, Oct. 2 and a witness last saw him walking alone near Central Oahu Regional Park.
Katherine Burr last saw her dad “Bill” on Sunday, Oct. 1. He was diagnosed with dementia a couple of years ago, but Katherine said he had his own second opinion.
“He argues with you when you try to point it out that he does,” Katherine said. “Tracking device was his phone, which he didn’t take with him. I tried putting something in his wallet, which he promptly took out.”
Katherine has put up fliers in Waipahu, Waikele and Mililani Town Center — all within walking distance of their Mililani home.
Police said Bill was last seen walking alone around 8:30 a.m. on Monday in Waipio.
“I’m just looking for any help I can get,” Katherine said, “if you’re in the parks over the weekend to just, you know, take a little bit of extra time to look around.”
Bill’s case has similarities to Frank Pangelininan, the 86-year-old man who has been missing since May.
The Hawaii Alzheimer’s Association said 31,000 people in Hawaii have some form of dementia and added that caregivers often make in-home adjustments.
“Installing baby monitors or video cameras at the front door to alert the family when the patient may or may not leave, putting safety locks, putting up gates, alarms on the door, anything to help to try to prevent someone from wandering,” said Dr. Gina Fujikami with the Hawaii Alzheimer’s Association.
Dr. Fujikami stressed that creating a plan during a dementia patient’s good day is critical so that they will know where to go if they snap back into reality during a bad day.
“Absolutely, it’s always good to have a plan just with any other type of disease,” Dr. Fujikami said. “Someone not recognizing their home or getting lost even just once, that is a big hallmark of more wandering to come.”
Anyone with information about Bill or Frank is asked to call Honolulu police.
Pangelininan’s family released a statement to KHON2 on Friday, Oct. 6 that can be read in full below.
Update on Missing Person Francisco (Frank) Pangelinan — Friday, October 6, 2023
My Dad, Frank Pangelinan, an 86-year old Ewa Beach retired Army veteran with over 30 years of service, has been missing since May 15, 2023.
He left his home mid-afternoon and drove to Home Depot in Kapolei. As seen on video footage, Dad exited the store on the opposite end from where he parked and looked for his car, but could not find it. He appears to have gotten disoriented and crossed the street to the Costco parking lot, then crossed the street again towards the Star Advertiser building. The video footage ends there. None of the neighboring businesses had any additional video footage, so we have no idea what happened to Dad — we don’t know which direction he went, whether someone gave him a ride, whether foul play was involved, whether he tried to walk home and got lost once it turned dark — it’s as if he just vanished into thin air.
Helicopter and ATV searches were conducted, but Dad was not found. Family, friends, neighbors and complete strangers drove around looking for Dad and also conducted searches on foot through Kapolei, Barber’s Point and Ewa Beach. A couple of group searches were conducted on the West side and in Honolulu. Flyers were posted all over the island.
All leads and sightings led nowhere and have diminished drastically over the months. We don’t know what else to do or where else to look for Dad. We implore the public to please keep an eye out for him and to call 911 or CrimeStoppers at (808) 955-8300 if they see him.
Our family is desperate to find Dad. We love and miss him so much and just want him to come back home safe and sound. Thank you to all for continuing to keep an eye out for Dad. We are forever grateful for your support, kind words and prayers.
Thank you,Patricia Arde and Family