Body of missing Md. man with dementia believed found

WASHINGTON — The daughter of an 80-year-old man, who had been missing for weeks after he wandered away from a senior picnic, is heartbroken that her father died outdoors, alone.

Police believe they found the body of Lubin Phipps during a search of Watkins Regional Park Sunday. The remains of a man who matches Phipps’ description was found in an area of the park that police described as “not regularly traveled.”

Phipps was last seen at a picnic held at the park on Sept. 18.

An autopsy has been scheduled and Prince George’s County police are investigating the death of the man found. Although the remains have not officially been identified as Phipps, his family wants answers.

“We didn’t get that chance to give him that final hug,” his daughter Michelle Phipps said Monday afternoon. “We didn’t expect that his last day would be spent out there.”

A native of the Virgin Islands, Phipps moved to Maryland several years ago to be closer to his family. He loved to dance and was a great chef, she said.

He also suffered from severe dementia and stayed at an assisted living facility in Prince George’s County.

Phipps said she would have liked the facility to inform her that her father was taking trip to the park.

In a statement, Woodmore House Assisted Living said that the facility was sadden by the news and that staff would work with officials to review the circumstances surrounding Phipps’ disappearance and death.

Edward Leyden, the family’s attorney, said that the facility should face criminal charges and that Phipps’ presumed death should be investigated as a homicide.

“Mr. Phipps walked away. That should not happen,” Leyden said.

Police searched the park and adjacent properties in September and undertook another coordinated search Sunday. His friends and family have also canvassed the park and surrounding area since Phipps’ disappearance.

The family said the remains were found in a field not far from where the picnic was held.

WTOP’s Mike Murillo contributed to this report from Bowie, Maryland.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up