12-year-old girl missing overnight found safe in Wareham

Sep 20, 2018

A massive search for a missing 12-year-old girl that included federal, state and Wareham authorities ended safely on Burgee Lane early Thursday morning.

Lily Elkins, 12, of Texas was found by a resident near a home on Burgee Lane in Little Harbor Estates after police received a call at approximately 6:45 a.m. According to Wareham Police, Lily approached a man as he was dropping his child off at a bus stop and sought help. Police said the man was aware Lily had been missing and notified officers. 

“She’s been out in the woods all night,” said an officer over a police radio channel.

Broadcasts stated Elkins’ parents were notified and reunited with their daughter Thursday morning. She was taken to a local hospital for evaluation, police said.

Elkins was reported as a runaway on Wednesday morning last seen in the Parkwood Beach area. The report touched off a search that included Wareham Police, the Coast Guard, dive teams, a Massachusetts Department of Fire Service drone, K9s and State Police helicopters.

Wareham Police officers stopped traffic on Great Neck Road and Indian Neck Road to show drivers photographs of Lily and asked for help in locating the missing girl.

Lily’s aunt, Sheri Williams Hall of Dallas, Texas, told Wareham Week her niece had been staying at a group home for girls for the past month when she ran away. She said Lily running away was out of character for the “sweet, shy” 12-year-old who didn’t have a cell phone. Hall said Lily, who has five siblings, visited with her parents just a few weekends ago.

“She’s not your typical runaway kid,” said Hall while the search was going on. “She can’t possibly comprehend what’s happening.”

Wareham Acting Police Chief John Walcek said dozens of law enforcement officers were involved in the search throughout the day and night. He thanked all for a successful operation.

“We are all pleased with the successful outcome and we further thank the many residents of Wareham who provided valued information toward this operation,” he said.