KINGWOOD – It doesn’t always turn out this way, but Mark Edwards and Texas Equusearch now have a happy ending to tell.
On Saturday, Jan. 8, a patient who had been flown by Lifeflight to HCA Houston Healthcare Hospital in Kingwood simply got up and walked out of the hospital.
Authorities said it was imperative that the missing man be found as quickly as possible because he had several serious cognitive impairments.
Moments later, Texas Equusearch was called to assist with the search.
“We began looking for him from the hospital in a one-mile radius,” said Mark Edwards with Texas Equusearch.
The missing patient was 54-year-old Kenney Marshall from the East Texas town of Zavalla.
“He was very mobile considering all of the special needs he had,” said Edwards. “He was able to get around really well. I was impressed, actually.”
An Equusearch team -- including Edwards and others -- searched for Marshall for six days until tips from the homeless community and others led them to the old Forest Cove Golf Course, which has been shut down since Hurricane Harvey. The golf course is located about three miles from the hospital where Marshall walked out.
“I’m looking down at tracks in the sand, looking for tracks,” said Edwards. “I look up, and there he is standing in front of me.”
The team found Marshall in the nick of time. The next two nights temperatures dropped to near freezing.
“It was fixing to get down to 34 degrees or 36 degrees,” Edwards said. “It would’ve been ugly had we not found him Friday.”
Edwards said Marshall was more than happy to be found. He was reunited with his family and never returned to the hospital.