Exclusive: Missing Visalia Elderly Couple Found 200 Miles Away
VISALIA, Calif. (KMPH) —
The family of an elderly couple from Visalia could barely hold back their emotions Thursday, after getting a call saying their loved ones were safe.
Family members of Matthew and Donna Rogers say the couple disappeared from their home around 8 p.m. on Wednesday.
Despite the family hiding the couple's car keys, Matthew, in his 70's, found them and took his wife of 60 years for a drive, a very long drive, some 200 miles away.
The couple landed in Jackson, Calif., about three and a half hours away.
The family still does not have all the answers.
However, they were able to confirm California Highway Patrol officers found the elderly couple on the side of the road. Their 1994 Oldsmobile Cutlass had run out of gas.
Not bad for Matthew, who hasn't been behind the wheel of a car in about a year.
The couples' son, Paul Rogers, says he got the call.
Paul was shocked to find out how far his dad went in the car.
Paul's wife, Tootsie Rogers, said, "Matthew gave up his keys a long time ago. That's why I don't understand why he grabbed the keys to do that. We have someone to come and feed him, I'm so glad they are alive."
Family members say the couple, who will be celebrating 60 years of marriage next year. Both suffer from memory problems.
Surprisingly, the one item that proved to be the difference in this case was a list of important phone numbers. A list was placed inside of Matthew's wallet, and that allowed the California Highway Patrol to get in touch with family.
Matthews's granddaughter, Amanda Rogers says, "My grandfather doesn't remember very well. So we always make sure that we keep a list of phones numbers in his wallet. I'm just glad that they are coming home."
Now, the family plans to keep a closer watch on the couple.