Danielle “Dani” Becker Friedland, 36, had been released from a mental health facility in Houston earlier on the day of the flight, her husband, Jordan Friedland, told the Houston Chronicle. But despite checking her bag for the flight to San Francisco, she never got on the plane.
An official with the Houston Police Department told the Chronicle authorities received a missing persons report on Monday morning and that law enforcement is now working to find the woman. Friedland, a Piedmont resident, was last seen at Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport, police told the San Francisco Chronicle. At the time she was wearing dark pants, a blue and orange jacket, and was carrying a black backpack. She was also wearing a beaded bracelet.
According to authorities cited by KHOU-11, Friedland had spent six weeks receiving treatment at the Menninger Clinic in Houston after suffering a mental health crisis. Her husband said she was making great progress before being discharged to receive more treatment in California, but she has not contacted him since disappearing. Police also said they believe she deliberately left her phone at the airport in Houston and that she isn’t known to have any other family in Texas. Authorities say she left the airport in a cab with just $160 in cash and a debit card.
Her loved ones have since traveled to Houston to search for her. “One of the scariest things for me is that Dani doesn’t know Houston,” husband Jordan said. “She doesn’t have friends or family here. She doesn’t have her luggage, her credit cards, her phone and I just can’t imagine how scary that must be.” He added: “We have a 2 and 5-year-old and she’s the best mom in the world and their world won’t be the same without her.”
Friedland’s family searched along Buffalo Bayou near Memorial Park in Houston on Tuesday night after receiving a tip, and the group planned to return to the area on Wednesday.
“We are aware of the news coverage about this unfortunate event,” the Menninger Clinic said in a statement. “Because of patient confidentiality, we cannot confirm the status of any patient or provide any information without patient consent. We are deeply saddened by this situation and our hearts go out to the family. We all hope for her safe return.”
The Daily Beast