MONROE, La. (KNOE) – Before this week, Callie Russell and her husband Kenneth never spent more than one day apart in their 30 plus years of marriage.
Callie reported her husband missing near their Calhoun home Saturday, but on Wednesday he was found safe and alive.
“Boy you talk about a woman that was so happy,” said Callie Russell.
Russell suffers from dementia and dozens of people spent days searching for him.
So when Zach Stephens and his bloodhound, Ruby, showed up Wednesday morning, he wasn’t expecting to find much.
“I was shocked. I was thinking you know it’s been 4 days, the chances aren’t real good. It’s been search parties out here and it’s been other dogs out here so when I saw him and he started talking to me I was shocked. I was happy,” said Stephens.
34 minutes. That’s how long it took Ruby to sniff out Russell after using one of his old shoes to track him down in a wooded area near Luebenia Road, just a few yards away from his home.
Russell was immediately taken to Gleenwood Medical Center for medical evaluation. Callie says she couldn’t contain her emotions when she finally got the chance to see her husband.
“Baby I told that woman I’ve been here five days with my husband missing. I said you have to let me back there to see him,” said Russell.
Callie says Kenneth only made one request from his hospital bed. Ice cream and water.
“Last night I felt it. I said they’re going to find him tomorrow. And here comes that guy with that dog,” said Russell.
Stephens says he’s been flooded with messages from people thanking him and Ruby, but he insisted this wouldn’t be possible without the hundreds of others who helped before he showed up.
“Oh man the families they’ve reached out to me from Pennsylvania, from Maryland, to here locally, a guy in Ruston, the family here in Calhoun they’ve all reached out to me thanking me. Just the community in general,” said Stephens.
We asked Callie what motivated her to never lose hope. This was her answer.
“Just trusting in the lord. I knew the lord would bring him to me. I knew God was going to bring him to me,” said Russell.
Stephens says a local business offered to give Ruby a complimentary spa day as a thank you for helping to find Mr. Russell.
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