Woman Lost in Parking Ramp for Four Days Found Alive
on 3/4/2010 (3)
Cleveland, Ohio - After four days of struggle, confusion, and a lot of stair climbing, long-time widow and part-time Walgreen's cashier Mary Barns was found alive by the Cleveland police department. She was dehydrated, hungry, and a Republican but otherwise okay after being lost in a downtown parking ramp since Monday.
"I must have gotten off the elevator on the wrong floor and from there things deteriorated very quickly," Mary told police.
Mary spent the next four days searching for either her car or an exit from the parking ramp. She wandering the eight level ramp, trying stairwell and elevator after stairwell and elevator but was unable to find her way out.
"Finding my car became secondary," said Mary. "I just wanted to get out, to see the light of day again, to hear the sweet whisper of a vagrant asking for spare change, to feel the push of a petty thief as he knocked me to the ground and fleed with my purse."
In order to survive the ordeal, Mary fed on rats, which she caught by making a trap out of a car antennae and a shoelace, and drinking water that dripped from the ceilings on the upper levels. She spent the cold nights sleeping in unlocked cars.
Friends of Mary reported her missing after she failed to show for their weekly book discussion and follow-up game of Yahtzee. Searches of Mary's home revealed her car to be missing but little other evidence as to her whereabouts.
"Mary was always timely and she never missed anything without calling to let you know why," said longtime friend and fellow Winger fanatic Barbra Jones. "We all feared the worst... mauled by bears or kidnapped by Libyan Nationalists."
Two days later several calls came into the Cleveland Police Department describing a confused woman matching Mary's description that was wandering the parking ramp while chewing on dead rats. Two days after that, police searched the ramp and found Mary. Her car was also found, though the lights were left on and the battery was dead.
"I'm just thankful to survive this ordeal," said Mary. "And from now on, I'll only be parking at street level."
Brian Company, owners of the parking ramp in which Mary was lost, admitted that labeling the floors with a long dead Navaho numbering scheme could be seen as confusing but denied any rat infestation problems in this ramp or any of the other three ramps they own.
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