By Pat Maurer
Mrs. Dennis, a county resident who lives near the Clare County/Gladwin County line, said she was the one who helped a young couple who walked away from a retreat at Camp CoBeAC in Roscommon County last month.
Clare County Sheriff’s Department deputies helped the Roscommon Sheriff’s Department and Michigan State Police in the recovery of couple reported missing in Roscommon County Sunday, October 17.
Ashley Carpenter, 19, of Davison, and Michael Trute, reported as age 20, from the Grand Rapids area, were located by Roscommon deputies in a traffic stop in Clare County after receiving a tip that the couple were at a Stockwell Road residence, according to information from Clare County Undersheriff Dwayne Miedzianowski and Detective Lt. Mike Coon.
“That is incorrect,” Dennis said. “They were actually staying at my cabin near Dodge City.”
Denis said she spotted the couple on M-61near the Gladwin County line lying in a ditch Friday and stopped to help. “They told me they were going to his (Trute’s) brother’s home in Grand Rapids,” she said. “It was terrible weather and she (Carpenter) had fallen and hurt her knees badly. They had been out in that weather all night Thursday night. They thought they could walk and hitchhike to Grand Rapids.” Dennis drove them to Mt. Pleasant to look for a place where they could stay and get help. “We couldn’t find anything,” she said.
After asking a clerk at Wal-Mart about finding help for them without any success, Dennis said she offered to let them stay at her cabin, which they did on Friday and Saturday night. “We left phone numbers with the clerk, but she never called us back.” Dennis added. “I think she was the one that notified police where they were. I didn’t know, and they didn’t have any idea that police were looking for them, they were just in love and wanted to get married.”
Dennis said police contacted her on Sunday night and stopped her on Hoover Avenue by the cemetery when she was coming back from a church function with Carpenter and Trute in her vehicle. “I had told them [Carpenter and Trute], that I would drive them to Grand Rapids myself on Monday.” She added that the couple had been trying to contact Trute’s brother several times then finally had been able to reach them with the news that they were all right.
Clare County deputies and the MSP were called to assist with the traffic stop and the couple were taken into custody by Roscommon deputies and taken back to Roscommon.
“They didn’t realize they were ‘missing’,” Dennnis said. “It was just a case of young adults in love.”