Missing Woman Found
and Kori Tuitt
TEWKSBURY -- The agony and pain family members had experienced for more than two weeks has finally dissipated. Their loved one, 27-year-old Tewksbury resident Yessenia Roman, was found safe. She had been reported missing since mid-December.
“I prayed and I’m glad God answered and led me to her,” said her mother, Lourdes Satterwhite.
Roman was located in Boston, Tewksbury police reported Thursday morning.
This positive news came a day after police said she might be in danger. Roman, who suffers from mental illness, was last seen by Tewksbury Hospital staff members on Dec. 14.
“She’s in good health. She’s safe,” said police Detective Lt. Ryan Columbus.
Satterwhite had told police she believed Roman may be off her required medication, which would present a danger to her well-being.
On Thursday night, Satterwhite had a long list of people to thank including Detective Peter Regan, her husband, son and other family members, including some cousins, her sister-in-law, niece and nephew. She said there were also many strangers who came together to help search for her daughter.
“We were suffering a lot. We spent Christmas without her, we spent New Year’s without her. I thought she was dead,” Satterwhite said. “There were a lot of sleepless nights in this house. A lot of crying.”
Police had reason to believe Roman was in Lawrence. A transportation service driver told detectives he picked Roman up at the Tewksbury State Hospital -- where she resides -- and dropped her off at the Union Street area of Lawrence at around 6 p.m. Dec. 14.
Since that day, Satterwhite had traveled from her home in Malden and handed out hundreds of fliers about her daughter’s disappearance all over Lawrence by hand.
“Her mom helped us track down leads,” Columbus said.
Some people had seen Roman in the Boston area, he added.
Satterwhite said her daughter was hospitalized, but released on Thursday. She planned to visit her daughter Friday. Although the end of 2018 was a stressful time for her family, she said the new year brought them good news. Satterwhite still has all of Roman’s Christmas presents, wrapped and ready for her.
In a social media video Thursday morning, Roman’s cousin recognized the community, law enforcement and media for their help in the search. Michael Satterwhite thanked those for passing out fliers and sharing Facebook posts.
He also requested that the public give the family time to cope.
“To make sure we get the rest and support we need from each other,” he added.
Satterwhite was overwhelmed with emotion and said she is simply grateful her daughter is alive.
“It’s going to be the first night in three weeks that I can actually go to sleep,” she said Thursday evening. “I feel good right now.”
Follow Rick Sobey on Twitter @rsobeyLSun.
Follow Kori Tuitt on Twitter @KoriTuitt.