Body of Man Who Went Missing in 2019 and Had Alzheimer's, Dementia Found in Ind. Lake
The body of a man who had been missing for over a year was found in an Indiana lake over the weekend, according to officials.
Porter County Sheriff Office's Cpl. Ben McFalls confirmed to The Times of Northwest Indiana that the body discovered in Valparaiso's Lake Eliza on Saturday was identified as Zachariah "Wayne" Lee.
Lee, 86, had been missing since November 2019, the outlet reported.
Police noted that the man had been suffering from Alzheimer's disease and dementia, and was often confused about his whereabouts, the outlet reported.
"Please keep the family and friends of Zachariah in your thoughts and prayers during this time," McFalls said in a statement to the Times on Wednesday.
In the early stages of Lee's disappearance, his family told local authorities they believed he had left his Porter Township home on foot.
They also noted that Lee somehow managed to leave after everyone else had gone to bed, despite the home having alarms and locks set up, the Times reported.
While authorities and loved ones searched for Lee around 108 S. County Road 600 West in Hebron, a silver alert was issued to the community.
That alert was later canceled when officials were unsuccessful in finding the man, according to the Times.
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On Saturday around 1:30 p.m., officials were called to the area of County Road 600 West south of Division Road for a report of a deceased man in the lake, The Chicago Tribune reported.
The Porter County Coroner's Office was also dispatched to the scene and later confirmed the identity of the body as Lee using dental records, according to the Times.
"Foul play is not suspected at this time and we do not believe there is a threat to the public," McFalls said in a statement to the outlet.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources and Porter County Sheriff's Department are currently investigating the incident, per the Tribune.