Family searches for answers after loved one injured in Love Co. hit and run

LOVE COUNTY, Okla. (KXII) - Oklahoma Highway Patrol Troopers are searching for a suspect after an Allen man with dementia was injured in a hit and run in Love County.

Troopers say 60-year-old Bobby Echols was walking along the shoulder of northbound I-35 when an unknown vehicle hit him around 1:30 Saturday morning.

His family was at the Border Casino in Thackerville celebrating several birthdays when Bobby went missing around 12:15 a.m.

His wife Pam Culifer said he has dementia and walked away once before, but that was before he was diagnosed.

Security cameras at the casino showed him walking north.

"So we went down I-35 and found him lying on the side of the road. Somebody had hit him," said Echols' son Adam.

"When we went by, my son said 'Stop. That's dad. That's dad'," said Culifer.

Culifer says they found him around mile marker four on his back with his feet on the white line of the interstate thinking he was dead.

"We had to see him like that but, by the grace of God, he's alive," Culifer said.

Bobby suffered several fractures on his pelvis, broken bones and cuts.

An ambulance took him to Medical City Hospital in Denton and he had surgery for internal bleeding Sunday afternoon.

Troopers said the vehicle that hit Bobby left one of its side view mirrors at the scene, which they plan to trace to get a make and model of the vehicle.

This collision happened just two weeks after a 29-year-old pedestrian died in a hit and run in the same area.

Culifer said she and her family asks the driver or any witnesses to come forward.

"This has been very tough on our family," she said. "Whoever it is, just please come forward, that would help the family out a whole lot of what we're going through."