Sometime during the daylight hours of Monday, August 20th, according to Liberty County Sheriff’s lead Investigator Jeff Ashworth, 63-year-old Sherry Gillie Vause walked away from her home on CR 2936 and disappeared into the deep woods of the North Liberty County area, and for a day and a half and two very hot and rain-filled nights wandered lost and confused in those woods. Suffering from a degree of memory issues and having just had hip surgery, it was extremely important that Vause is found as quickly as possible. Although the Tarkington Prairie Volunteer Fire Department along with the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office and D.P.S. Troopers conducted an immediate and valiant search all day long on Tuesday with foot searchers, horses, A.T.V’s and a Department of Public Safety helicopter, the results were negative.
On Wednesday morning the LCSO along with a group effort of over 30 searchers including Texas EquuSearch, Constables Office, Game Warden and D.P.S Troopers converged on the area once again with A.T.V’s and foot searchers to resume the search. At 10:55 am, according to Pct. 5 Constable David Hunter, he along with fellow searchers LCSO Cpl. Darrell Werner and D.P.S. Trooper Trevor Whatley were following a trail of dropped personal articles consisting of a tube of toothpaste and clothing found on the ground when they heard Vause calling for help which was approximately a mile south of her home.
Although barefooted, badly bitten by insects and being very dehydrated, Vause was alert and as reported by Constable Hunter, said “… I’m so glad you found me because I was getting tired of walking around in these woods…”. Sherry Vause was taken on board one of the A.T.V’s and brought to the Command Center where she was attended by members of the Liberty County EMS and reunited with members of her family. Were it not for the tireless efforts of all these searchers, from various agencies on both days, this search could have had a much more tragic ending rather than the happy ending that it did have.