ROCK RIVER SEARCH & RECOVERY Hamilton County,
10/17-20/08 & 10/25-26/08
CASART was activated for a search and rescue operation in
the vicinity of IndianLake
in HamiltonCounty on Sunday 10/16/08 by the NYSFEDSAR.A 71 year old man, Fred Gillingham or subject was last seen on
Sunday 10/12/08 at a hardware store in IndianLake.He was reported missing on Wednesday 10/15/08 when a friend went to
check on him at his camp near Indian Lake because he had failed to show up
for a dinner engagement the previous night.The TV had been left on in his seasonal camp and he was scheduled to
fly back to his home Camarillo, CA
on Wednesday 10/15/08.His rental car was found by State Police parked at the
Rock River trail head Wednesday evening and Forest Rangers
started the search that evening and continued searching on
Thursday 10/16/08. Temperatures were in the 40s and 60s
throughout the eleven (11) day search.The Incident Command Post (ICP) was set up at the DEC Headquarters in IndianLake
and the IndianLake Fire Station was used as the
assembly point on Rt. 28.
Twelve (12) CASART members reported to the ICP at 7:00a.m on Friday 10/17/08, Tina Bradt,
Ellie Connick, Ron Dearlove, Deb Evans, Deb Jones, Bruce Knudson, Nancy
Langham, Greg O’Hara, Mike Romanych, Charles Taylor, Dawn Timm and Eileen
Tobin. Crews were formed to conduct Type II and Type III searches, were run
all day and no clues were uncovered.
The search continued on Saturday 10/18/08 at with Three (3) CASART members, Russ DeFonse, Bruce Knudsen and
Charles Taylor reported to search.Type III searches were run with no clues uncovered.
The search continued on Sunday 10/19/08 at with Eleven (11) CASART
members, Ellie Connick, Russ DeFonce, Deb Evans, Joe Gelsomino, Bruce
Knudsen, Greg O’Hara, Roy Reehil, Dawn Timm, Eileen Tobin, Linda Valette and
Bob Wheeler reported to search.
Type III searches were run with no clues uncovered.
The search continued on Monday 10/20/08 at with Three (3) CASART members,
Ron Dearlove, Bruce Knudsen and Nancy Langham reported to search.Type III searches were run with no clues uncovered.
The search was suspended for volunteers from
but was reactivated on
Eight (8) CASART members Paul Beaudoin, Deb Evans, Joe Gelsomino, Mary Jane
Lasher, Greg O’Hara, Mike Romanych, Chuck Taylor and Eileen Tobin reported
to search.The weather turned
nasty with heavy rain and cooler temperatures.
The search continued on Sunday 10/26/08 at with One (1) CASART member,
Eileen Tobin reporting to search.No clues were found, no new leads were uncovered, the subject was not
found and the search was suspended unresolved.
The terrain went from gentle with rolling hills to rugged
and had a mix of beaver meadows with standing water, open hardwoods and
dense cedar swamps.
discovered the body of the subject on
Monday 11/17/08 in a grassy area in the vicinity of FirstLake
in the Essex Chain of Lakes north of the Rock River
outside the primary search area.
The subject had crossed the Rock River,
contrary to expectations of behavior for a day hiker.
To find out more about the team or to get a membership application write
to CASART at P.O. Box 143, Inlet, NY 13360, call us at 315-357-4381, visit our web site at
www.casart.org, or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note to Editors: Feel free to contact us for interviews or for further
information. Thank you!