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Community-wide effort to find missing Westmore woman

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by Joseph Gresser

WESTMORE—The base of Hinton Hill Road was filled with emergency vehicles, Vermont State Police Cruisers, and cars belonging to game wardens, emergency responders, and regular citizens Sunday.  Vermont State Police Lieutenant Andrew Jensen, newly appointed commander of the Derby barracks, had commandeered the Westmore Town Offices, and he and several other officers sat at computers in a room whose walls were covered in maps.

It was part of a community-wide effort to locate, and bring home safely, Judith Giglio a 72-year-old resident of Goodwin Mountain Lane, who went missing Friday afternoon around 3:30 p.m.  

Lieutenant Jensen, who expressed optimism that Ms. Giglio, who he described as vulnerable, would be found safely, said around 70  people and a number of dogs were taking part in the hunt.

The search, he explained, was organized in concentric circles, each a quarter-mile larger than the last.  He showed a map that indicated the quarter-mile circle nearest, Ms. Giglio’s house had been thoroughly gone over.


Despite his hope for a positive outcome for the search, Lieutenant Jensen noted that, when last seen, Ms. Giglio was wearing black shorts, a gray shirt, and gray Crocs slip-on shoes, not ideal for the wet weather experienced over the past couple of days.

According to the description of Ms. Giglio circulated by the State Police, she is between five-feet-fiveiinches andfive-feet-six-inches tall, and weighs between 145 and 150 pounds.

She has brown shoulder-length hair and may walk with a limp.

Lieutenant Jensen said a motorist may have seen Ms. Giglio and not realized her situation.  He asked anyone who saw a woman matching that description walking along a road to call the Derby barracks at (802) 334-8881.

Along with the state police, search and rescue teams, Glover Ambulance, and others, members of the Westmore Volunteer Fire Department are also taking part in the seach operation.

Kimball Johnson, who described himself as a life member of the department, said firefighters took a boat and circled Willoughby Lake, which is downhill and barely a mile from Ms. Giglio’s home.  He said the crew split up and went around the lake again in two boats meeting across Willoughby from their starting point.

Mr. Johnson said the department also covered the middle of the lake.  They found no sign of the missing woman, he said.

Both Lieutenant Jensen and Mr. Johnson expressed appreciation for the willingness of town residents to undertake the hard work of searching the roads, woods, and fields around the town for their neighbor.

Mr. Johnson said year-round and summer-residents turned out as soon as they heard the news of Ms. Giglio’s disappearance.  He said many of those who are not taking part in the search operation have been bringing food to keep up the strength of those who are.

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