EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

January 15, 2014

Family searches for disabled man last seen Dec. 7

By Mike LaBella
mlabella@eagletribune.com

---- — HAVERHILL — Linda Morse of Haverhill has been searching for her cousin, David Ford, for over a month.

She said Ford, 53, who is disabled, was last seen Dec. 7 by his roommate at the apartment they shared on Baldwin Street in the Mount Washington neighborhood.

Morse said she got a call the following Monday from the person assigned to manage Ford’s finances. She said Ford has mental health issues that require him to take medication and that he hasn’t taken his meds since he became missing.

Morse said Ford’s sister in Nashua, N.H. last spoke to him on the phone several days before he was last seen and that his sister has not heard from him since.

Morse, who serves as Ford’s power of attorney, said a missing person’s report was filed with police.

Morse said she’s been in communication with police, who have been searching for Ford, and that she’s gotten involved in the search as well.

She said police along with a K-9 team conducted a search of the East Broadway neighborhood, as the area is familiar to Ford, as well as the Riverside neighborhood near Trinity Stadium, where Ford likes to walk, meet up with his older brother, Dennis Ford, and enjoy a cup of coffee together.

They could not find any trace of Ford, Morse said.

“I’ve been posting flyers and I also posted a message and his picture on my Facebook page,” she said. “The only responses I’ve received are from people who said they know my cousin, but they haven’t seen him.”

Morse said her cousin, a lifelong resident of Haverhill, never fails to meet his “rep payee” on Mondays as he is eager to receive spending money to purchase things for himself, such as meals, coffee and bus fare.

“It’s a routine for him and he never strays from it,” she said.

Morse has also been talking with people in other areas of the city where her cousin is known to hang out, such as GAR Park, the Mount Washington neighborhood, the Winter Street area, downtown Washington Square and Riversedge Plaza.

“No one has seen him and it’s very unusual,” Morse said. “I’m very worried about him. The whole family is.”

Morse said her cousin’s daily routine involves taking a bus to Riversedge Plaza on Lincoln Avenue, where he meets up with his brother Dennis.

“They walk around the plaza, stop at Dunkin’ Donuts for coffee, then David would spend the rest of the day walking around the plaza,” Morse said.

Morse said her worst fear is that he may have fallen into the Merrimack River while walking along paths behind Trinity Stadium.

She said a search of the river has not been conducted yet because of ice.

“Police have contacted different jails and hospitals, but nobody fitting David’s description has turned up,” she said.

She described her cousin as about 5-feet 6-inches, 180 pounds, long blond/brown hair and hazel eyes.

“We don’t know what he was wearing on the day he was last seen,” Morse said.

Anyone with information about David Ford is asked to contact police at 978-373-1212, or Linda Morse at 978-372-9160.