TRAPPED IN CAR FOR 2WKS BEFORE HE DIED; Driver with dementia stuck on remote track.
Byline: STEPHEN WHITE firstname.lastname@example.org
A PENSIONER missing for two weeks died of pneumonia in his broken down car two days before his body was found in the driving seat.
Former policeman John William Davies, 78, who suffered dementia, had been stuck at the bottom of a remote country track in his Rover 45 which had run out of oil.
Police had been searching for Mr Davies for 15 days since he disappeared from his home in Llancynfelin, mid Wales, on March 12, an inquest heard.
After hearing the grim evidence, Ceredigion Coroner Peter Brunton said: "The difficult part is that although he was missing for two weeks, the pathologist believes death was only one or two days before he was found."
The grandfather of five's wife Margaret said he had been in good spirits before he vanished.
But she added: "He was talking to people who were not there. I asked if I should get the on-call doctor but he declined."
The last time Mrs Davies saw her husband was before she went to sleep that morning.
She said: "When I woke at 8.30am, John and the car had gone." The inquest heard that he suffered hallucinations the night before he disappeared and had probably become disorientated.
He was found on remote farmland in the Nant-y-Moch area by shepherd Alan Lloyd Williams.The cause of death was bronchopneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, dementia and heart disease. Recording a verdict of death by natural causes, Mr Brunton said: "It is incredible he managed to drive a normal family car down there.
"When police tried to remove the car, the battery was flat and there was insufficient oil, suggesting the engine had seized.
"In my view, he would never have been able to drive back up the track, which begs the question, why didn't he walk? "The only clue, perhaps, is that he was suffering from dementia."
th"It is incredible he managed to drive a family car down there CORONER
MYSTERY John didn't try to walk