State - Regional

Family of missing Robeson County woman offers $1,000 reward for safe return

ROBESON COUNTY, NC (WBTW) - A Robeson County family has offered a $1,000 reward for information that would lead to their missing mother's safe return.


The North Carolina Center for Missing Persons issued a Silver Alert for Susan Dial McGirt, 55, around 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4.


McGirt's daughter, Mary Wesson, told News13 her mother has wandered close to home in the past, but has never been gone this long.
"She has walked away from home before," said Wesson. "But just down the road or something. She would get to the stop sign, and turn around, and come back."

Robert McGirt said his wife was checked into Covenant Care, an assisted living facility, on Jun 29. He said he got a call last Wednesday from the owners of the facility who said his wife was missing.


"It seem like she just disappeared from the face of the Earth," McGirt said. "They said she went out towards 95, down the dirt path from the facility, and the [police] dogs tracked her to the edge of 95, and that's where they lost the scent."


McGirt said his wife has battled mental health for years, and was diagnosed with bipolar schizophrenia. 


"She was receiving mental health help from Coastal Southeastern United Care here in Pembroke, and they actually recommended the facility," he said. "For me, I think she should've been in a more secure facility, or lock-down facility," he continued. "In her state of mind, she was pretty much afraid of everything, and I could not see her getting in a vehicle with a stranger."


McGirt said his wife's mental health took a turn for the worse in the past year.


"Each time she gets in one of these episodes it takes longer, and longer to get her out of it," said McGirt. "They've changed her medication to try and get her back stable, but nothing seems to work."

Wesson said she's worried that her mother hasn't taken her medication in six days.


"She was so paranoid in her mind she thought that everybody was out to kill her or harm her," Wesson said. "And I just cannot picture her willingly getting into a vehicle with a stranger."


Wesson said it has been difficult not knowing where her mother is, and thinks she was trying to make her way back to their house in Pembroke.


"I honestly believe Wednesday, when she went missing, if she could've gotten to a phone she would've tried to reach out to my daddy," Wesson told News13. "If she could've gotten to a phone at the time she went missing she would've reached out to us, but now she's been so long without her medication, she probably wouldn't know what to do with a phone."


Wesson said the family hasn't received any leads on her mother's case since July 6.


"We've been to different businesses looking at surveillance footage," she said. "We've been door-to-door. The detectives have been to motels. Me and my husband, and both my boys have rode all the way to South Carolina to truck stops, and rest stations, and gas stations trying to find her."


The owners of the assisted living facility matched the McGirt family's $500 reward to now make it $1,000.


"My family don't have much at all," Wesson said. "We live paycheck to paycheck, and that's barely enough, but we're willing to give what we can if someone would just bring our mother home safe."


The McGirt family said the owners of Covenant Care have helped every step of the way since Susan McGirt went missing.


"It's just been unimaginable what we're having to go through," said Wesson. "They have been wonderful trying to help us find our mother. They were with me all day Wednesday, all night Wednesday night, all day Thursday, and all night Thursday night," she said about the owners of the facility. "They've been very helpful, and they're very concerned as well."


McGirt and Wesson said they want closure, and will not give up hope.


"For us to have to go to bed every night, and not know where she's at, and not knowing whether she's safe or not; I would rather be planning a funeral than to have to go to bed at night not knowing where she's at," Wesson said with tears in her eyes. "We have no idea where our mother is, and a family just ain't a family without a mother." 


Anyone with information about McGirt's location should call the Robeson County Sheriff's Office at 910-671-3170.

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