Missing 67 Year Old Man
Written by Glenn Henderson
It’s 4:25 in the afternoon on Thursday, April 17. I am hosting the first Board of Directors (BOD) meeting for the newly elected BOD. It’s been our recent tradition that whoever hosts the meeting cooks a meal for the other board members before the meeting starts. I am expecting the other 4 members at 5:00. Dinner is almost done, just have to toss the salad and it’s ready.
At 4:35 I get a call from call captain Gwenda Yates that we have a search for a 67 year old man in Aguanga. At first I thought she was kidding but nope, it’s the real deal. I told my Wife to call my Son’s Family to come on over, there is a great meal waiting. I stopped by a fast food joint for a hamburger and am on my way. I meet Gwenda at the garage and pick up the rescue truck. When we got on scene Rob, Eric, Helene, and Cameron are already on scene. It seems that our missing person had an argument with his wife and had left the home at 7:30 am. When he had not returned by 4 pm she got worried and called the Sheriff’s department. His abandoned bike was found at the entrance of a canyon that had a lot of water flowing out of it. A search dog had gotten a hit from breeze coming down the canyon so that was our first priority.
Cameron and I started up the canyon. Helene and Eric were picked up by Star 9, the Sheriff’s helicopter, and then flown in further up canyon along with the search dog. The sheriff’s ROVE (Riverside Off-road Vehicle Enforcement) team was also there and took their off road vehicles to cover all dirt roads along both sides of the canyon. Kirk had also arrived on scene and went with ROVE. Cameron and I searched the canyon as well as we could but with the rushing water and dense cover of weeds, brush, reeds and POISON OAK, we felt that we would need to come back and research the entire area in the daylight.
We pulled the field teams out at 9:30 and started making plans for the next morning. The ROVE teams continued to drive the dirt roads. At 2:00 AM the subject walked out to the command center. He said he had fallen asleep and did not hear us searching for him. Hmmmmmm? Tony Bowen the Star 9 pilot was flying so low that Cameron and I could not communicate when we were standing next to each other. He must have been really tired. But, we are really happy with the outcome. This was a good ending to the search.
RMRU Members Involved: Kirk Cloyd, Cameron Dickinson, Glenn Henderson, Eric Holden, Helene Lohr, Rob May, and Gwenda Yates.