In pictures: 'Don't let her go!' - Family's relief as Karen Scott located safe and well
TEARS of joy and relief flowed freely as missing Down Syndrome woman Karen Scott was re-united with her mother today.
After six days of deepening anxiety, exhausted Kathleen Scott kissed and hugged her daughter and sighed "I'll be able to sleep tonight and I mightn't wake up for a month."
Karen (44), who has special needs, went missing from her home in Barnmore Grove in Finglas last Friday. A huge search operation involving gardai and more then 100 local people came to a joyful end when she was reportedly found on a bus in O'Connell Street in Dublin.
"I got a call from the gardai in Store Street who told me 'We have her!'
"I told them 'Don't let her go!'" said Kathleen.
Gardai drove her home where a relieved Kathleen was waiting.
"I gave her a big hug and a kiss. Then she asked for a big cup of tea and I thought 'That's my baby.'" said the relieved mother.
"I thought I'd never see her again," said Kathleen, sitting beside a smiling Karen on the family sofa.
"I prayed every night for her....I'm over the moon," she said.
"I'm going to have a rest for a month. I want to thank everybody who helped to look for her. I can't get over that there were so many good people helping to look for her. I'm so grateful to them all," she said.
Volunteer search coordinator Robert Burke (35) said: "Everyone is very very relieved. Karen is back home. There's plenty of tears of relief. We were told she was found on a bus in O'Connell Street.
"It was a great effort by the community, and by the Dublin Missing Persons Group, the gardai, and the Civil Defence.
"Everyone's exhausted but it's a good result. She back. She didn't have her suitcase but she's back," he said.
Beverley Gannon, who managed the volunteers at the search base in the local youth club, said "We're so happy, we're in Disneyland and it's like riding the tea-cups and we're spinning, absolutely spinning."