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West Odessa man found dead in vacant lot near his home - Odessa American: Law Enforcement

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West Odessa man found dead in vacant lot near his home

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Posted: Wednesday, February 19, 2020 11:24 am

It was a heartbreaking end to the four day search for missing 78-year-old Edward Moss who was found dead about 100 yards from his home Wednesday morning.

Law enforcement, family and volunteers had searched on foot, ATV, helicopter and with drones for Moss, who had dementia, in a desperate attempt to locate him before temperatures dropped and wet weather rolled in.

Moss was found dead, lying on his back in a vacant lot about 100 yards southwest of his West Odessa residence, Ector County Sheriff Mike Griffis said Wednesday morning.

Griffis said Moss was found around 10 a.m. Wednesday near the intersection of Westmoor Road and Slavik Avenue. Griffis said Moss blended in with debris in the vacant lot.

Ector County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called to Moss’s West Odessa residence Sunday morning when his daughter arrived at his home to take him to breakfast and he was gone. A silver alert was issued.

Griffis believed Moss was in the vacant lot near his home when the missing person’s report was issued. ECSO stated in a press release that no foul play is suspected.

Sheriff’s deputies had blocked off an alley near Slavik Ave. on the 6900 Block of Westmoor Rd. The alley, blocked off with yellow tape, had barbed wire fence on each side with power lines above leading down to the location where sheriff’s department vehicles were parked. A medical examiner’s office investigator took pictures of the scene.

Not far from where he was found, some of Moss’ family stood outside of his home on North Alexander Ave. His oldest daughter, Gail Greer, said she wanted to thank everyone for their help trying to find her father and that they are unaware of any further updates.

“I just want everyone to know if they have family members with Alzheimer’s to get that silver alert,” she said.

ECSO held a press release on Wednesday afternoon. Griffis said that ECSO had requested help from Texas Search and Rescue, otherwise known as TEXSAR. Some of those individuals arrived Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. Griffis said that he also employed the help of a friend who had a helicopter and flew the area Tuesday afternoon. He reported that around 10 a.m. Wednesday morning, a member of TEXSAR located the body of Moss in the vacant lot adjacent to the alley.

“We ask for your prayers and thoughts for Mr. Moss’s family. I had the opportunity to speak to Mr. Moss on a few occasions throughout the years and he was a nice man,” Griffis said.

Griffis said that Moss appeared to be in that spot for a few days and believes that Moss was probably in that location the morning they took the report.

“In the circumstances that we found there, we feel that he was confused and suspect that he died right there and no foul play is suspected at all,” Griffis said.

Griffis reported that Moss was wearing dark clothing and that ECSO probably flew over that area Tuesday afternoon in the helicopter, but with all the stuff in the lot, he would have blended in.

“The family was trying to do everything they could,” Griffis said.

Griffis encouraged anybody that has a family member with dementia, Alzheimer’s or any kind of disorder that might make them wander to call ECSO and get signed up with Project Lifesaver, a program that provides those with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other disorders with a tracking device that can help law enforcement find them if they wander off.

In a text message from Moss’ granddaughter Tiffany Patterson wrote that the family’s goal, “was to find him no matter what and that goal was met just not with the ending we all prayed for. But at least we now know.”

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