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Desperate parents find out their beloved son is safe 13 YEARS after he went missing

Mirror logo Mirror 06/10/2017 Anita Merritt
Credits: Devon Live WS © Provided by Trinity Mirror Shared Services Limited Credits: Devon Live WS

The desperate parents of a 46-year-old schizophrenic have found out their son is safe - 13 years after he went missing.

Teresa and Tony Schofield launched an appeal to find their child after being prevented from knowing his whereabouts when he 'cut all ties' over a decade ago.

The couple have not seen their son Adrian for 13 years and believed he was homeless in or around the Tiverton and Exeter area.

However, since the appeal was published on DevonLive.com, their minds have finally been put at rest that Adrian does have a home and is still accessing the help of local mental health services.

A doctor at Devon Partnership NHS Trust (DPT), the provider of mental health services in Devon, emailed the family after a member of staff saw the appeal and recognised Adrian as one of their service users.

The email said that they were unable to give details about Adrian's health but that, as an organisation, they recognised how distressing it may be to be unaware of the whereabouts of a loved one.

Teresa said: “On Sunday we had received an email from DPT to say that Adrian is known to them. They were unable to share any details, but at least our minds are put at rest that he is not on the streets and is now getting the help he needs.”

Adrian, lost his sister at 16 and two grandparents within two years, but went on to become an extremely clever computer analyst, owning his own company.

He was sectioned in 2004 and spent nearly seven weeks in The Cedars in Exeter before being diagnosed with negative schizophrenia.

On his release he was placed in temporary accommodation in Cullompton, before being given a flat in Howden Road, Tiverton.

At that time he was being medicated by injection and had a community psychiatric nurse (CPN) during the early weeks of his release from hospital.

Teresa recalled: “As parents who dearly love him, we were as supportive as we could be and took him shopping, out for meals, walking etc. He seemed to be responding well and going to the gym to keep fit until he decided to stop being medicated.

“He became increasingly insular and non-communicative. We reported this to his CPN who told him, against our wishes - no confidentiality - that we were concerned.

“The consequence was that he left a message on our answer-phone saying he was cutting all ties and no longer wanted anything to do with us

"We were devastated, but were unable to find out anything more about him because of data protection.

“We sent letters and made many phone calls to the CPN, but were asked not to contact them again.”

The family has struggled since then to retain communication with Adrian, as well as health professionals who have been unable to reassure them that he is okay.

Teresa and her husband Tony hope that by sharing their struggles, it will raise awareness of the plight parents of mentally ill patients endure.

Their concerns were raised again recently when Teresa says she decided to Google Adrian’s name and was shocked to read a report in DevonLive.com, dated September 2016, that he had been evicted from the flat he had been living in for the past 11 years and had tried to prevent the eviction by brandishing a metal bar.

Investigations they made through homeless charities in Exeter where Adrian was known revealed he had disappeared in March, and no one now knew of his whereabouts.

Their worst fears - that he was homeless and not receiving help - have now proved unfounded and Teresa and Tony have expressed their gratitude to all those who have helped give them the reassurance that Adrian is safe.

Teresa said: “We would also like to thank all those who got in touch with us with possible sightings of our son and also with support. At least we now feel that he is getting the help he has so desperately needed for many years.”

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