With another cold night looming, the search continues for a missing senior in rural Maple Ridge.
Tjeerd ‘Ted’ Vanderveen left his house in the 26500-block of 112th Avenue at 10:45 a.m. on Thursday to go for a walk in the Ferguson Trails area, a location well-known to him, say Ridge Meadows RCMP. A person believed to be the missing man was sighted in the area as late at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday.
The 72-year-old suffers from dementia.
RCMP Cpl. Dean Caughy said searchers went over the entire trail in the system on Thursday night, searching until 1 a.m.. Then searchers re-deployed and covered them all again beginning first thing on Friday morning, even expanding the search area.
“With his age, we probably went further than he could have, but we wanted to cover all the bases,” said Caughy, who is in charge of the ground search.
He said the rural area, challenging terrain and cold weather add urgency to this missing persons case.
“Obviously, the sooner we find him, the better,” said Caughy.
Vanderveen had been dressed for a walk during cold daytime temperatures. According to area residents they woke to temperatures of -6C on Friday morning.
Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue has been supported by neighbouring search teams, an RCMP helicopter and a police K9 unit.
Family and friends are also joining the search. One local couple started down a trail off walked a trail at the end of Ferguson Avenue on Friday afternoon, saying they regularly walk in the area, and wanted to assist in the search.
Police have been canvassing area residents, and ask that people search their own properties and outbuildings for the missing senior.
Vanderveen is described as an elderly white man with a slim build and short grey hair. He was wearing a turquoise coat, jeans, black boots, and a black toque and black gloves.
He responds to the name ‘Ted.’
Police are asking anyone with any information or if they have seen him to call 911.