55-year-old John Sanchez was hiking along rough terrain Saturday, near San Diego — when he went missing. The Marine veteran was with a group of people, reportedly in search of a grounded weather balloon with a GPS device attached.
Sanchez was last seen by his companions at about 3 p.m., when they became separated. He’d apparently taken a wrong turn somewhere along the route.
Shortly after 9pm Saturday night, deputies from the Borrego and Ranchita area responded to a report of a missing hiker. According to the Times of San Diego, Sanchez was classified as a “missing person at risk,” since temperatures in the remote area dropped into the low 40s and because he carried minimal supplies.
Despite calling in various air support during the night to check the area — authorities did not find the missing hiker. “As dawn broke, Sheriff’s Department and U.S. Border Patrol helicopters worked with SAR ground units in the field,” the Times report said.
Border Patrol helicopters eventually spotted Sanchez in a recreation area in Rockhouse Canyon, about one-half mile north of the San Diego County line.
Officials said, Sanchez suffered through a “frigid night” without any serious medical consequences.
Sgt. Carlos Medina with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Office added: “The former Marine was found to be in good physical condition. He stuck it out in a T-shirt and jeans.”
Editor’s note: yes, we know there are no former Marines, it’s a quote from the Sheriff.
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