Florida Silver Alert: A Lifesaver for the Elderly

Florida Silver Alert: A Lifesaver for the Elderly

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Lester Moore, 85 and diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, had been retired for years when he left for “work” one morning. He left his residence in his 1983 Ford Crown Victoria which he believed to be his delivery truck.

After his family hadn’t heard from him for a few hours, they called law enforcement who issued a Silver Alert.

Moore was found soon after, almost 30 miles away at a gas station. “He was driving to make a delivery,” said Maxine Moore, Lester’s daughter-in-law. “His mind was telling him that.”

Florida Silver Alerts go out when an elderly person with a cognitive impairment, such as Alzheimer’s disease, is missing and believed to be driving a vehicle. Once a Silver Alert is issued, emails are sent to law enforcement agencies, health facilities and social service organizations across the state. Florida Silver Alerts specifically indicate that one of the criteria for activation is that a missing Alzheimer’s person must be driving a car. Thus, messages describing the vehicle make, model, and tag number are broadcasted on state roadway message boards--there are about 560 in the state of Florida.

Lessons Learned:
Understand this special population.

  • Understanding this special population will guide your initial questioning—work with the caregiver to get a comprehensive understanding of the missing person.
  • Previous work experiences, prior residences could help target the search area.
  • Did they do repetitive things/take similar routes often?
  • Has the person mentioned anything recently (wanting to go to work, wanting to go home, wanting to visit a friend, go to the park, etc.)


For more information on Florida’s Silver Alert: http://www.floridasilveralert.com

Resource Used:


 Return to the Alzheimer’s Initiative main page.