When an elderly woman with dementia wandered from her care facility in Roseville, California, in 2019, four kids on their bikes set out to help find her.
The children—Logan Hultman, 10, Hope Claiborne, 11, her brother Kashton Claiborne, and Makenna Rogers—jumped into action after hearing police officers in a helicopter announcing the 97-year-old woman’s disappearance.
According to the Roseville Police Department, Glennetta Belford was last seen around 4:15 p.m. that day. She is “mostly non-verbal” and tends to “hide or hunker down in a location.”
Logan said they were outside playing when they heard cops asking the public for help in finding the woman.
The bunch then grabbed their bikes to start searching the park and neighborhood near Cooley Middle School. However, they had to go back home after Logan fell off his bike. His brother patched him up while they ate dinner.
That’s when Logan’s mom, Alyssa Hultman, learned about their mission.
“Even after Logan took a fall down a hill, the kids went back … out and were very determined. They told us that they are going to be the ones that find her,” she said.
When they returned to the road, they searched near their neighborhood, which Logan said is close to Belford’s facility. The kids saw a woman walking around and consulted a photo to confirm that it was Belford.
“She was right here and she was walking and she was talking to herself. And then when we came, she said, “No, no, no. Go away, go away, go away,”‘ Kashton recalled.
Hope, the oldest in the group, knew what to do next. She called 911 and reported that they had found the missing woman.
Within seconds, Roseville police officers arrived at the scene. The young sleuths had saved the day!
“That’s when the police came and, well, they took care of everything else. We were very excited, very happy,” Logan said.
Authorities praised the local residents who came out to help look for the woman but gave a special shout-out to the children turned “junior detectives” who actually found her.
“This is a great example of our exceptional community coming together to lend a helping hand,” the police department wrote in a Facebook post. “This proves a great point, age is just a number and anyone can help out in a time of need.”
When reporters prodded the children about starting their own detective service, they asked how much they would charge.
After some discussion, Makenna answered for the group, saying, “there’s no price on helping.”
Hope and Kash’s father, Daniel, said he couldn’t believe it when he first heard the news.
“I doubted them [when they told me they were going to go find her],” he said. “I was like, ‘Yeah, OK, go have fun, be safe on your bikes,’ and they were like, ‘No Dad, seriously, we are gonna find her, we’re gonna get our friends, we’re gonna find her.’”
Alyssa Hultman said she was “really proud” of all the kids for volunteering to help in the search.
“It shows a lot of their character and the type of people that they are,” she said. “They just made the choice as a group to go and help someone and I think that’s really cool.”
When she asked her son why they helped in the search, his answer made her feel even prouder.
“He looked at me like I was almost crazy and said, ‘Because somebody needed help, mom. And when people need help you go and help them. That’s what we do.’”
What great kids! You can learn more about this story in the video below.
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