A 79-year-old Carrollton, Georgia, man who disappeared without any warning on January 16 is still missing over a week later. Authorities are asking the public for assistance in locating the elderly man, who suffers from dementia.
WSB Atlanta reports that Lamar Putnam was last seen leaving his home on Ferndale Road, in Carroll County, Georgia, on January 16. He drove away in a black Chevrolet Trailblazer at around 8 a.m. According to his family members, Putnam called from his cellphone at around 11 a.m. later that morning, but they aren’t sure exactly where he called from.
Later that day, Putnam’s vehicle was found abandoned near the Hollis Crossroads area in Alabama, under the Tallapoosa River bridge in Cleburne County. Although Cleburne County Search and Rescue and numerous volunteers scoured the area, they still haven’t located Putnam.
According to Capt. Shannon Cantrell of the Carrollton Police Department, Putnam has mild dementia, but can still drive. Family members stated that he may have been in the Hollis area on the way to check on livestock. He owns a pasture and enjoys checking on new livestock sales.
“His family says he has mild dementia, but he can still drive. He owns a pasture on Hay’s Mill Road and they said he normally goes and checks on his cows pretty often.”
Authorities are urging people to keep an eye out for Putnam, who stands 5-feet-8 inches tall with balding brown hair. He weighs around 172 pounds and was last seen wearing khaki pants, a camouflage hat, brown Merrell shoes, and a plaid shirt. The Carrollton County Police Department shared a surveillance video of Putnam, who was seen visiting a convenience store in the Hollis area on January 16.
Per Ginger Hollis, a stylist at the Beauty Shop II on U.S. 431 in Hollis, Putnam walked into the shop at around 11:30 a.m., asking for directions to the Tallapoosa river. He returned to the shop two more times, again, asking for directions to the river. Hollis stated that he was in good spirits and didn’t seem worried.
“He was smiling. He didn’t seem confused.”
After speaking with the family, however, Cantrell learned that although Putnam’s case of dementia is mild, it’s been getting worse, and this isn’t the first time Putnam went missing.
“He’s already had some past of getting lost.”
Yet, Putnam never went missing for days, much less over a week, and family and friends are gravely concerned for his safety and well-being.
According to Cleburne County Sheriff Dennis Green, the search for Putnam has been extended to include helicopters and water patrol.
“Water patrol went from the bridge all the way into Randolph County. We’ve searched probably 20 miles downriver and within a 5-mile radius.”
The volunteer count continues to increase; but, so far, there are no clues to Putnam’s whereabouts. Volunteers are not only searching through woods and the river area, but also in abandoned houses.
Meanwhile, family members continue to urgently share information, including a Facebook page with more than 4,000 members. One of Lamar’s family members expressed concerns over Putnam simply vanishing, and fears that he may be in danger.
“No thread of clothing. No copy of his driver’s license that he kept with him. Nothing. Nothing. People do not just vanish from this Earth. Let me say that again. People do not vanish from this Earth. We are hopeful and in prayer that he is somewhere safe, warm, dry, and probably confused. Unfortunately, we are also keenly aware of the stabbing sensation in our hearts that signifies the reality that, with each passing hour, the chances of our prayers coming to fruition diminish. But, we are not giving up.“
Anyone with any information on Lamar Putnam should call 911 immediately.
[Photo via Facebook/Bring Lamar Putnam Home]