Disabled woman reunited with family after losing her way during hike, ending 3-day search

Liu and her husband enjoyed breakfast at their Shui Chuen O home after their happy reunion on Oct. 27, 2020. Photo via Apple Daily
Liu and her husband enjoyed breakfast at their Shui Chuen O home after their happy reunion on Oct. 27, 2020. Photo via Apple Daily

A mentally disabled woman who lost her way while hiking in Sha Tin returned home safely to family on Monday afternoon.

The 49-year-old woman, surnamed Liu, had been missing for three days.

According to Apple Daily, passerbys encountered Liu in Yuen Long yesterday afternoon. Seeing that she was very weak and disoriented, they worried that she might be a missing person and therefore contacted authorities.

Police confirmed with Coconuts that she was found near a light rail station.

On Oct. 24, Liu went on a hike with her husband near Shui Chuen O Estate, where they live. They stopped at a pavilion where her 60-year-old husband stopped to do tai chi and she went to a nearby stream to get fresh water.

Read more: 6 girls rescued at Kowloon Peak after getting lost on hike

When she did not come back, her husband thought that she had simply returned home as they hiked the trail often and believed she is familiar with the route back, according to HK01. He then went home by himself.

The police confirmed that they received a call for assistance in the afternoon of Oct. 24 and put out a notice for a missing person. During the three days that Liu was missing, police, firemen and Civil Aid Service personnel were deployed to search for her.

Apple Daily reported that Liu couldn’t find her husband after she went to get water and so hiked down the mountain by herself.

She then took a bus to Yuen Long, not knowing where it was headed, and spent two nights sleeping on the streets and in parks. She reportedly also asked passerbys for water and did not eat during the time that she was lost.

Her family told Apple Daily that Liu arrived in Hong Kong 12 years ago but has not been able to pick up Cantonese. She was also hospitalized three years ago due to a brain disease.

After being reunited with her family, Liu chatted with her husband and her son over a breakfast spread that included vegetables and prawn. She was seemingly unaware of the episode and the worry she had caused her family.

When asked about how he might prevent a repeat of the incident in the future, her husband said, “I won’t bring her hiking again.”

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