Jamie Toll, a kindergarten teacher who went missing from Modesto, California, nearly three weeks ago, was found alive on Friday. Thirty-three-year-old Tull was discovered by distraught friends and family who had been out searching for the missing teacher. She was reportedly found not far from where her wrecked vehicle was discovered near Childs and Cunningham roads in Merced County in La Grand, where she was last seen on July 17.
As Fox 13 Now reports, loved ones of Jamie Toll were particularly concerned about her disappearance due to her longstanding mental health issues. According to the beloved kindergarten teacher’s father, she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder roughly seven years ago and was prescribed medication to treat her condition.
According to the father of Jamie Toll, she was managing her mental health issues, and was even considered “high functioning,” as long as she remained on her medication. However, advice the kindergarten teacher received from a pastor and his wife some months ago caused her to stop taking her pills. Her father claims that the unidentified pastor and his wife told Jamie that her bipolar drugs “lead to demons,” resulting in the teacher not taking her medication for six months before her disappearance.
On the the day she vanished, drawings and papers were reportedly found near the scene where Jamie Tull’s crashed car was found abandoned.
Tull’s rescuers reportedly found the kindergarten teacher in a field only about a half mile east of where her car was discovered nearly three weeks ago. She had become separated from her cell phone, which was found near a water trough for cattle.
According to Lynn Garber, a step-cousin to Jamie Tull, the three searchers who found the missing teacher were unsure whether or not she had survived her ordeal when they finally found her.
“We saw her moving. And we said, ‘It looks like she’s alive,’ and she says, ‘I’m alive.'”
While California kindergarten teacher Jamie Tull was found alive, she did not come through her three week long ordeal completely unscathed. Her father says that Jamie was severely sunburned, as well as dehydrated, but conscious and alert “enough to speak.”
After being rescued, Tull was flown to a Fresno hospital. It has since been reported that her sunburns may have been severe enough to require surgery.
The group of three thrilled searchers who found Jamie Tull claim that she was in incredible pain at the time of her rescue, and barely able to move due to the horrific nature of her sunburns. Rescuers claim that Tull survived by drinking water from the cattle trough near where her phone was found, as well as by eating insects.
The California kindergarten teacher was reportedly thirsty and famished when authorities arrived on the scene. Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke claims that when he got there, Jamie Tull only wanted food and water. The sheriff added that Tull was, inexplicably, trying to make her way to Yosemite, more than 60 miles away from La Grand.
Her reasons for heading to Yosemite have not been made public, and she was reportedly actively trying to avoid being found.
“I don’t think she had any insight or desire to be found. She was just trying to get to Yosemite.”
Neither authorities, nor Jamie Tull’s family members have commented publicly about to what extent the teacher’s mental health issues may have contributed to her disappearance and current state. However, as Fox 40 reports, this is not the first time that Jamie has gone missing.
Tull’s father claims that Jamie was “taken against her will” a decade ago while living in Southern California. It was just three years after that incident that the kindergarten teacher was diagnosed as being bipolar.
Prior to being found on Friday, a $100,000 reward had been offered for the safe return of Jamie Tull. Authorities had planned to scale back the search for the teacher if she wasn’t found today.
[Featured Image Tull Family]