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Neighbors in shock after missing man with Alzheimer's found dead on porch

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A Silver Alert ends in heartbreak for a Milwaukee family.

Albert Kelly, 79, was found dead on a porch on 14th Avenue Tuesday, the Medical Examiner’s Office says most likely from hypothermia.

Rodney Robinson lives at the house. He was home at the time but said he had no idea someone was on his porch.

“I am still shocked because I could have helped him,” Robinson said.

A Silver Alert was issued Tuesday for Kelly who walked away from his home on Sherman Blvd. Monday. The Medical Examiner’s report says Kelly wasn’t wearing a jacket, hat or gloves.

“I am so sorry, I pray for the gentleman,” Robinson said. “I lit a candle for him and I hope he’s resting in peace.”

Kelly was a father and a grandfather. His neighbors say he liked to walk his dog.

“I’m sad,” Donna Lyda said. “I mean I cried because he was a nice guy.”

The Alzheimer’s Association says 6 out of 10 people with Alzheimer’s will wander.

“They could be uncomfortable,” Wendy Betley, Program Director for the Southeastern Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Association, said. “They could just be looking for food, they could be just anxious or bored. “There’s typically a reason for it.”

The Medical Examiner’s report reveals Robinson’s home wasn’t far from where Kelly used to live back in the ’70s. The Alzheimer’s Association says thinking it’s a previous time isn’t uncommon.

“The most recent memories are the ones that are taken away first,” Betley said.

The Alzheimer’s Association is encouraging people in the community to take silver alerts seriously.

“When you’re out and about keep an eye open,” Betley said. “The longer they’re missing, the harder they are to locate.”

The Alzheimer’s Association says by next year more than 14,000 people in Milwaukee County will have Alzheimer’s or dementia.

“It’s cold out here,” Robinson said. “If you see somebody that’s not dressed for the weather pay attention.”

The Wisconsin Department of Justice says this is the first Wisconsin silver alert this year to end in death.

Last year, 69 Silver Alerts were issued in Wisconsin, two people were found dead.

One person is still missing.

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