News / Utah / 

Provo man missing after fleeing state hospital

By Sandra Yi | Posted - Jun. 5, 2011 at 5:06 p.m.


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PROVO -- The family of a man missing for several days spent Sunday searching for him in areas of Utah County.

Thayne Ford, 38, walked out of the Utah State Hospital on June 2 and hasn't been seen since.

"We're just concerned. We love him. He's our boy," said Thayne's father, Doug Ford.

Thayne suffers from a form of schizophrenia and depression. He also has a seizure disorder and if not treated, could get confused.


He's a gentle person but he doesn't really truly believe that he's mentally ill.

–Doug Ford


"He has no clothing and no money, so we're a little surprised. We thought he would surface within a day or two," said Doug Ford.

The family, along with church friends, hiked and biked the Provo Canyon trail where Ford is known to frequent. They also put up missing person's flyers with Thayne's picture at convenience stores and restaurants.

Thayne has disappeared in the past but this is the longest he's gone missing.

"Usually he's just gotten lost in Provo, wandering around. He's familiar with the BYU campus. He was a student there," Doug Ford said.

With each passing day, the family becomes more concerned with Thayne's safety, particularly with temperatures increasing.

"The heat today is bad," said Tyler Ford, Thayne's brother.

"We're worried about the water, whether he drowns," added sister-in-law Emily Ford.

Ford was civilly committed to the hospital nine months ago because he refused to take his medication.

"He's a gentle person but he doesn't really truly believe that he's mentally ill," said Doug Ford.

The Utah State Hospital, which operates under the Utah Department of Human Services, cannot release information about patients.

A spokesperson for DHS said when a patient is missing, the hospital conducts an investigation and law enforcement authorities are notified.

The family is asking anyone with information to call Provo Police or the Utah State Hospital.

E-mail: syi@ksl.com

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Sandra Yi

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