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Missing Kelowna man found safe; mom says son walked out of hospital – Okanagan | Globalnews.ca

A Kelowna man missing since Friday was found Tuesday evening when he arrived at a family member’s house, according to his brother.

Police and family members gathered at Mission Creek Greenway Regional Park in the morning to look for Rilyeh Joseph, 21, who was last seen on the afternoon of Oct. 1.

Joseph was last seen wearing blue hospital pyjamas and blue hospital socks, without shoes. On Monday, RCMP said there are concerns for his health and well-being.

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“Family and friends report that it is out of character for him to be out of contact for this long,” RCMP said in Monday’s press release.

Joseph’s mother, Vivian Hicks, spoke to Global News about how her son was able to walk out of Kelowna General Hospital after being admitted for self-harm reasons.

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He has been missing ever since.

Rilyeh Joseph was last seen around 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 1, 2021 on foot in the 2000 block of Pandosy Street.

Rilyeh Joseph was last seen around 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 1, 2021 on foot in the 2000 block of Pandosy Street.


Submitted / Kelowna RCMP

“The health-care system should not allow these types of things to happen because now … here we are, in a desperate situation looking for him,” said Hicks.

“The best way to describe how I feel right now is desperate because Rilyeh has been missing since Friday afternoon. Obviously been quite some time.

Hicks continued, saying she was “very disappointed that something like this could actually happen because he has mental health issues and there should have been no reason why we are in this position now.

“He should have been in a lockdown situation.”


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Hicks says she talked to health officials on Friday when her son was admitted, but doesn’t understand how he was able to leave.

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“There should be someone there 24/7 watching people because this is what people do when they have mental health issues,” said Hicks.

“Because this is what people do that have mental health issues: They will try to go. I’m just at a loss.”

On Tuesday, family members gathered at Mission Creek Greenway Regional Park following an anonymous tip. The tip said he may have been spotted in the area.

Kelowna RCMP was not available for an interview, but did say they are following up on numerous leads from the community. They were seen canvassing the park.


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Interior Health was not available for an interview, but did supply a statement.

“If an individual goes missing against medical advice and we feel they are at risk, we immediately contacted the RCMP,” said Interior Health.

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“While we cannot speak to an individual situation, our thoughts are with the family during this difficult and stressful time.”




© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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