East Bay man desperately hopes 75-year-old mom missing in Camp Fire is found alive

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A Pleasanton man is continuing to hold out hope that his mother will be found alive soon.

Seventy-five-year-old Joanne Caddy has been missing since the day the Camp Fire broke out. On Tuesday, KRON4 talked to her son about the missing person’s case, which has now been taken over by a Butte County sheriff investigator.

“I just can’t give up,” son Sol Bechtold said. “I just have to believe that she’s out there.”

In the search for his 75-year-old mother, Bechtold says he’s been to about 15 shelters in-and-around Butte County and calling the hospitals daily.

Now, a Butte County sheriff’s deputy has been assigned her missing person’s case, who will have more authority to get information from the Red Cross and other shelter providers in locating Caddy.

“He said after that, the next steps would be for them to go to her property with some dogs to see if they can recover anything–and that will tell us whether or not she actually got out of the house or if she was there,” Bechtold said.

​​​​​​Bechtold knows his mom’s house was destroyed. Recently, a reporter with the Paradise Post filmed her street in the nearby Town of Magalia.

He says it was hard to watch.

“Just complete distraction,” Bechtold said. “Nothing standing. No trees. No houses. Untouched car is melted in the driveways. He comes up to her driveway and rolled passed it, and he has the camera focused perfectly on it, and it’s just completely gone. You see bits of the foundation sticking up out of the ground, and that’s it. And you just wonder did she make it out.”

Caddy lives alone and does not drive or have a car, but her son says his mom’s neighborhood is tight-knit. So, he’s hoping someone helped get her out.

He also says he believes his mom’s character will help her come out of this in one piece.

“She can be ornery at times, and I’m hoping that that’s gonna come out, and she’s fighting her way through this, and I’m hopeful she escaped,” Bechtold said.

In addition to being handed out in the Butte County area, a flyer has also been posted up on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram in the hopes of getting the word out to anyone who might know where his mother is.

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