Search squads comb river for Sumter County man

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 16, 2004

Officers from the Sumter County Sheriff’s Department and other first responders were searching Wednesday and Thursday for a 102-year-old resident of the Belmont community who wandered away from his home.

Brister Waiters, who lives on McDowell Road near Belmont Park 15 miles from Demopolis across the Tombigbee River, was discovered missing Wednesday at approximately 4 p.m, said Sumter County Deputy Howard Rhodes. Searchers went through the area until late that evening. Officials were back out again Thursday morning aided by a helicopter from the Alabama State Troopers.

Searchers such as Sumter County Deputy Eddie Larkin could be seen driving around the area on a four-wheeler. Just after noon authorities were waiting for members of the Marengo County and Choctaw County Rescue Squads to join them in the search. They expected to stay in the area the rest of the day Thursday.

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Don Spruell, physical therapist at Bryan W. Whitfield Memorial Hospital, knows Waiters and said he is very spry for his age. He has received help for many years from the hospital’s home health unit.