It is a touching story that has made national headlines and is blowing up on social media. A dog in Texas helped authorities find its owner — a woman with dementia who had been missing for days!
The woman, Sherry Noppe, was found thanks to her loyal companion – a dog named Max.
Noppe was found in the woods at George Bush Park in Houston around 3 am local time on May 6 after rescuers and volunteers heard Max barking, according to a tweet from the Harris County Constable Precinct 5.
George Bush Park is 3,000 acres, and over three days, crews had searched about 60% of it by foot and ATVs. Sherry and Max were finally found more than 2 miles from home, reportedly 50-100 yards off of the walking trail in heavy brush.
“It’s a small miracle that she’s alive after being missing for so long,” Constable Ted Heap said in a follow-up tweet. “Our concern now is getting her out of the woods and to a hospital for a medical evaluation.”
Max actually belonged to one of Noppe’s sons, who sadly passed away a couple of years ago. He and Noppe certainly built a bond since then.
Volunteer Michael England was among the first to find Noppe after hearing Max’s barking.
“We knew when that dog barked, there should be no dogs out there – that it was her,” said England.
A Facebook group, “Find Sherry,” was started to help find her and has grown to more than 9,000 members. Its members celebrated once she was located safely.
Her family told local station 12 News that Sherry had been treated for cuts and bruises at a local hospital and that they believed she had remained in the same location – about 2 miles from her home in neighboring Katy, Texas – the entire time she was missing.
“She’s doing surprisingly well for how long she’s been out there and the conditions that we were experiencing,” her daughter Courtney Noppe told the outlet. “The heat. The rain. We’re very grateful.”
Max is being hailed as a hero by family and friends for helping rescuers locate Sherry.
“With Max, that dog had no leash, no collar, and stayed by her side for three days,” Sherry’s son, Justin Noppe, told 12 News. “And that just shows you the loyalty the dog has.”
Max was evaluated by a veterinarian, and he is just fine; and Sherry was released from the hospital in time for Mother’s Day!
“It’s been a blessing to us to bring our mother home on Mother’s Day – the weekend [was] very special for us,” Justin told the outlet.