Massive search underway for missing woman

Searcher organize photos of Sharon Silk before leaving the Oil Heritage District Community Centre

More than 300 concerned neighbours, volunteer firefighters from Petrolia and across the region and the OPP are scouring Petrolia this evening looking for Sharon Silk.

The woman, who is supported by Lambton County Developmental Services, has been missing since this afternoon (Monday). Staff of LCDS began searching immediately and the OPP was also contacted.

Petrolia/North Enniskillen Fire Chief Lawrence Swift says the fire department was called around 8 pm when the light started to fade. By then, there were hundreds of people already looking for the petite woman with brown hair and glasses. At 10:30pm, a formal search was organized breaking the town up into four sections to coordinate an organized search.

“We brought everyone back to the (Oil Heritage District) Community Centre so we could put in place some sort of command structure,” he told The Independent as searchers continued to stream in to the centre, flashlights in hands ready to search.

Lori Dalley of Petrolia was about to climb into bed when she heard the news of the search and got in her car. “It’s what you do,” she said before heading out.

sharon silk
Sharon Silk (right) seen with a friend

Swift says Silk is suffering from dementia, is shy and responds to women better than men. He advised searchers not to tresspass if they thought they saw something on private property but to call the command centre so the police or firefighters could respond.

Silk lives on Northridge Place just off Petrolia Line on the east side of town. She moved into the home built by Habitat for Humanity with her best friend Karen Ramsey with the assistance of LCDS last year.