A woman who had been missing since last weekend was located in Mexico by her family on Saturday afternoon, according to San Diego police.
Police received a report that 58-year-old Josephina Yolanda Lopez was located by family members at a bus stop in Tijuana sometime before 1 p.m., police said.
Lopez had gone missing last week, just before the holidays, and search efforts for her were launched shortly after.
Now Lopez's family can rest easy knowing she's home safe.
“This is the best way to end 2011; [its] the best news of all," said Lopez’s nephew, Christian Baltazar. “We never gave up hope since day one."
“We just couldn't believe it,” added Lopez’s sister, Lucy Baltazar.
Lopez's sister spent the last week scouring the South Bay for any trace of her and due to the fact that Lopez has type-two diabetes and a bipolar disorder, finding her was even more crucial.
While she was missing, Lopez was spotted outside of a Laundromat along Palm Avenue and Picador Boulevard, then across the street outside of a CVS where police reviewed surveillance cameras.
During the search, officials with SDPD and County Search and Rescue focused on the Otay Mesa area, even deploying their chopper at one point.
“We've been going everywhere and it was just like where else?” Lucy Baltazar said.
A chance run-in with police may have been key in finding Lopez.
Apparently, Tijuana police questioned Lopez then released her, not knowing she was reported missing.
“The name she gave them was Yolanda Toscano. It's her maiden name. We thought right away...that's her!” Christian Baltazar said.
With that info, the family searched the border town on Friday. Then on Saturday morning they found Lopez at the Central Bus Terminal in Tijuana cold, dehydrated, and hungry.
Lopez's family said she crossed the border into Mexico in search of her husband, who they said died there years ago.
“It is a miracle. To be honest, I don't know how she was able to...She only had $38 in her pocket,” Christian Baltazar said.
“I’m just so glad that we found her and that she's fine and that nobody took advantage of her," Lucy Baltazar. "This is going to be a good year."