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The sister of a Radcliff woman found in her home after a nearly three-day search says not taking medication and grief over a recent family death and illness contributed to her sister’s situation.
Beverly Mahone of Elizabethtown said her sister, Gwendolyn S. Payne, has had difficulty dealing with the death of a brother-in-law and her father’s medical diagnosis earlier this year.
“All the worries and stress and pain, it was a combination of things,’’ Mahone said. “People cope with loss and illness of a loved one differently. You push yourself into work and other things to mask your feelings.’’
Mahone said her sister was on “a few” medications, but she wasn’t sure for what reasons. She thinks not taking the medications led to her sister being “confused and disoriented.’’ She said her sister also lost a lot of weight recently, dropping from about 120 pounds to 103 pounds.
Payne, 49, was reported missing last week when she failed to show up for work on consecutive days. She had last been seen at 12:30 a.m. Sunday by a neighbor at her Elm Road home. A Tuesday search of part of Saunders Springs Nature Preserve led bloodhounds to a ravine area Tuesday. After searching the preserve again Wednesday, police and fire officials returned to Payne’s home to pick up another scent for dogs. It was there she was located in a cubby hole under waterbed panels.
Mahone isn’t sure if her sister had been there the entire time she was missing or if she had left the home and returned.
“We haven’t gotten into those details,’’ she said.
Mahone said several family members were out of town when alerted that Payne was missing. When her sister didn’t show up for work at McDonald’s in Walmart in Radcliff, her employers contacted police.
“She loves her job and is very dedicated to her job,’’ Mahone said. “She never misses work.’’
A store manager Friday said she couldn’t comment on the circumstances.
Payne remains at Hardin Memorial Hospital under observation. The mother of three sons could be released Monday, Mahone said.
“She’s doing good,’’ Mahone said. “She’s still a little confused and dazed about what happened.’’
Mahone and her family are thankful for the assistance offered in the search for her sister, writing in an email, “The family of the missing Radcliff woman, Gwendolyn Payne, would like to send their deepest gratitude to the Radcliff Police Department, Kentucky Bloodhounds Association, Radcliff Fire Department, Vine Grove Fire Department and the Fort Knox Fire Department for all their hard work and dedication in the search for Gwendolyn Payne.
“The family firmly believes that if it had not been for the joint effort of all of these agencies and the dedication of the Radcliff detectives and police officers the outcome of the finding of Gwendolyn might not have been so good. May God bless and thank you to everyone who brought Gwendolyn home to us! Gwendolyn is recovering well and we are so happy to have her home.”
Jeff D’Alessio can be reached at (270) 505-1757 or email@example.com.