Marin County Sheriff's Office
Search & Rescue

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Sonoma Mutual Aid 12/13/2004

Marin SAR was requested at 10:00 PM to assist Sonoma SO SAR on a missing hunter who called CHP on his cell phone and stated he was lost in the area behind Lake Sonoma. Shortly afterwards, they lost contact with him. Nine Marin SAR members arrived just after midnight and deployed on trail and ATV assignments. The subject was located around 3:00AM when a CARDA K-9 team heard his whistle. He was located well off trail and was walked out to an area he could be taken out by boat. Four CARDA K-9 teams and Army Corps of Engineers Park Rangers also responded.

Muir Beach Search 12/1/2004

Twenty members started for Muir Beach to assist Deputies and local volunteer firefighters in searching a missing despondent male who left a suicide note and was suspected to jump off nearby cliffs. As members were responding, a check of the local tavern found him at the bar. He was taken to unit B for physiological evaluation.

San Rafael Evidence search 11/20/2004

Ten SAR members responded for an evidence search at 1:00 AM for an attempt homicide. Members logged two hours each.

San Rafael evidence search 10/28/2004

Seventeen SAR responded to assist Sheriff’s Detectives for an evidence search after a shooting. Members logged three hours each.

Mt. Tam Search 10/24/2004

Thirty Marin SAR members with State and National Park Rangers responded for a missing female hiker who became lost while traveling cross country to Stinson Beach from Ridgecrest Road. She had planned to meet her husband in Stinson Beach, but misjudged the distance and terrain challenges and how quickly nightfall would come. Teams began to deploy around 10:30 PM covering trails and following her intended route. She walked into the Command Post at 11:30 PM after finding her way to a trail that led to the Pantoll Ranger Station Command Post.

Yosemite Mutual Aid 10/19/2004

Marin SAR responded with 10 Mountain Rescue members on a rescue mission for several groups of climbers on El Capitan after an early season snow storm caught climbers unprepared. Marin SAR members where assigned to three teams with NPS Rangers and YOSAR that hiked in from Tioga Road, eleven miles to the top of El Capitan. Travel was difficult due to sleet and snow and post-holing in two feet on snow with heavy packs. Shortly after teams arrived on scene and started rescues, the weather broke allowing the NPS helicopter to recon the area. Two climbers were confirmed dead on the wall. One was rescued that afternoon and YOSAR and NPS rangers remained overnight to complete the recovery of the Japanese climbers.

Sonoma Mutual Aid 10/4/2004

Marin SAR was requested for a technical search operation for a missing male. The terrain was steep and inaccessible and included a several hundred foot waterfall that had been the site of previous fatalities. Sonoma SAR had been searching for the subject all night. As we were en-route, a Sonoma ground team located the subject with substantial injuries at daylight. Sonoma SAR conducted the rescue with support of Fire units.

Yosemite Search 9/20/2004

Marin SAR with numerous other teams started for Yosemite National Park for a missing 62 y.o. female hiker last seen the previous afternoon below the cables on Half Dome. As we began to mobilize, we received word that a YOSAR team located her lost, cold, but alive several miles off the trail between Half Dome and Little Yosemite Valley.

Fairfax Search 9/16/2004

Eleven Marin SAR members along with Deputies, Openspace Rangers and CARDA K-9 teams were activated at 5:00 AM to search for a missing 52 y.o. woman who left her house in her nightgown around 10:00 PM under suspicious circumstances earlier that night. The search area included both urban and openspace areas around the PLS. Several teams were deployed when a deputy observed her walk into her house around 7:30 AM.

Mill Valley Search 9/11/2004

Fifteen Marin SAR members responded for two missing five y.o. girls from a park when they disappeared shortly after playing a soccer game. Mill Valley PD requested SAR shortly after notification. As SAR members began arriving in scene and setting up, the girls where located by Patrol units ½ mile away near HWY 101 after getting a report of sighting. They traveled that distance, mostly along the shoreline of the bay in a little over an hour.

Kentfield Fire Incident 9/4/2004

Thirteen Marin SAR members returning from the Sonoma search were diverted to Kentfield for a wildland and structure fire. Units responded to the staging area until the fire was contained. The fire had potential to be a major fire incident due to Red Flag conditions.

Sonoma Mutual Aid 9/4/2004

Thirteen Marin SAR members responded for a 59 y.o. male hiker missing from the previous night missing in the Occidental area. The search area included a dense Redwood forest with steep canyons. The subject was located very lost by hunters, who then gave him directions on how to get out. At the first house he came by he called 911. He had traveled six miles, well outside the initial search area.

Pt. Reyes National Seashore Search 8/31/2004

Marin SAR, Mounted Posse and Air Patrol responded with mutual aid from Sonoma SAR, State OES CAL-ESAR and 5 CARDA dog teams for a missing despondent hiker who’s car was located in the Five Brooks Trailhead by NPS Rangers. Three hours into the search, the subject was located deceased 100 yards off trail and ¼ mile away form the PLS by a joint CARDA K-9 team and a Sonoma SAR Ground team.

Yosemite Mutual Aid 8/21/2004

Marin SAR started back to Yosemite for a missing 7 y.o. autistic boy missing overnight off Glacier Point Road. Numerous teams responded the next morning to assist. A helicopter working the search located the missing child around noon, alive and well, 18 hours after he was last seen in a ravine about a mile away from the point last seen (PLS). One Marin members already in the park assisted with plans during the first operational period.

Yosemite Mutual Aid 8/19/2004

Marin SAR responded six members mutual aid for a missing female hiker, overdue 3 days from a trip on the John Muir Trail between Happy Isles and Tuolumne Meadows. Four members assisted in plans and logistics during the second operational period while two other members where deployed with a YOSAR member to search Tenaya Canyon. During that assignment, one of our members sustained a leg injury and was extricated my air. Marin responded another twelve members for the third operational period. As we arrived in the park the woman was located through investigating a sighting several days old. The missing woman was lost off trail below the Clouds Rest area, not far above Little Yosemite Valley in good condition.

Yosemite Operations 7/23/2004

Marin SAR while training in Yosemite assisted NPS rangers with two incidents. The first was a double medical aid for female a fall victim at the base in Lower Yosemite Falls and her daughter. Two Marin SAR members responded with YOSAR and assisted in treating and a carryout. The second call, four Marin members where flown with YOSAR to the upper Nevada Falls trail for a man with an ankle injury. The patient was carried to an LZ and flown out at dusk. Members then hiked out to the trailhead.

Mt. Tam Search 7/10/2004

Marin SAR was requested to respond for a missing 13 y.o. boy missing from Muir Woods and overdue about 7 hours. His mother also became separated, then lost and ended up at Stinson Beach. As the SAR team arrived, an NPS Park Ranger located the missing boy on Muir Woods Road in Muir Beach. Twenty six members responded.

San Rafael Search 6/30/2004

Twenty seven Marin SAR members responded to assist San Rafael PD for a missing two y.o. boy in Gerstle Park. SAR teams were deployed to cover the steep hillside behind the park while the SAR management team set up for a large incident. About two hours into the search a resident located the child walking about π mile away and 600 feet in elevation above the park. Other responding agencies included San Rafael and Marinwood Fire, San Rafael DPW, Sheriff’s Air Patrol, 8 CARDA K-9 teams and CHP Helicopter 30 along with local residents.

San Rafael Evidence Search 6/30/2004

Ten Marin SAR members responded at 6 AM to assist San Rafael PD for an evidence search after an attempted homicide. Members logged three hours each.

Mill Valley Search 6/27/2004

Marin SAR started to assist Mill Valley PD for a missing Alzheimer’s patient with Parkinson’s disease. Subject was located in a supermarket about 1/2 mile away as SAR was responding.

Mt. Tam Rescue Response 6/19/2004

Marin SAR started a carryout team to assist Southern Marin Paramedics, Marin County Fire and Water District Rangers for a pregnant female with abdominal pains on the Matt Davis Trail. We were canceled by fire units who determined the woman could hike out.

Big Rock Ridge Rescue Response 6/14/2004

Marin SAR responded ATV’s and a carryout team along with several Fire agencies for an injured mountain biker on the Big Rock Ridge trail. First Fire unit on scene was able to easily access to patient from the fire road. SAR was canceled.

Mt. Burdell Body Recovery 6/11/2004

Marin SAR responded an ATV team to assist Novato PD and Open space Rangers in recovering a body from the Open space Preserve.

Mt. Tam Rescue response 6/5/2004

Fourteen SAR members started with Marin County Fire and Water District Rangers for an injured hiker in the area of Eldridge Grade and the Wheeler trail on Mt. Tamalpais. We were canceled by rangers who found the patient easy to extricate by vehicle on the fire road.

Siskiyou County Mutual Aid 5/28/2004

Fifteen members responded to assist Siskiyou County in the search for a missing 11 year old boy and girl who became separated from the group during a school outing in Lava Beds National Monument near the Oregon boarder. The area contains a significant tunnel complex as well as challenging terrain. The subjects were found alive and well after being lost for over 26 hours in the Lava tubes while we were en-route. We then continued to Lassen National Park for mountaineering skills training.

Napa County Mutual Aid 5/18/2004

Five members responded as a management team to the Lake Berryessa area of Napa County for a missing woman last seen in front of her house in a very rural area two miles off the nearest road. She was last seen the evening prior in front of her house. Napa County Sheriff’s investigators spent the early part of the day ruling out foul play. The terrain was very brushy and many unmarked and overgrown dirt trails. The next morning an additional 7 Marin SAR members responded along with teams from Napa, Contra Costa, Solano, CAL-ESAR and 6 CARDA K-9 teams. Napa County had conducted a hasty search the day before. About 3 hours into the morning search effort, an National Guard Blackhawk assisting in the search located the woman about 1/4 mile behind her house in dense brush. Marin ATV’s were able to make it to her location and extricate her. She was transported for dehydration and altered mental status.

Stinson Beach carryout 5/15/2004

Twelve members responded along with Stinson Beach Fire and Marin County Fire for a hiker with an ankle injury on the Matt Davis trail. As we started up the trail we found another hiker had brought the woman down on his back. We returned to our local rope rescue training.

Mill Valley Fire Incident 5/8/2004

Ten Marin SAR members responded to assist Sheriff Patrol units in staffing road closures and providing command post support during a wild land fire that threatened numerous homes for about four hours.

Contra Costa Mutual Aid 4/4/2004

Eight Marin SAR members responded at 0430 hours for a despondent hiker missing in Redwood Regional Park from the day before. Shortly after arrival on scene a CARDA dog team located the missing subject deceased. Contra Costa, CAL-ESAR, Alameda and East Bay Regional parks responded.

San Rafael Alzheimer’s search 4/17/2004

Marin SAR was started for a missing Alzheimer’s patient in San Rafael late Saturday night. The subject was located shortly after activation.

Napa County Mutual Aid 4/17/2004

Marin SAR responded a 5 member management team Saturday night to assist Napa County SAR in planning the search for a missing fisherman at Lake Berryessa in northern Napa County. After working to make plans through the night, an additional 8 Marin SAR members responded at first light and joined a total of 100 ground searchers. Many teams had to be inserted by Air National Guard Helicopter and boats due to challenging terrain. During Sunday’s operations, the story surrounding the subject’s disappearance told by family and friends seemed to change hourly. At the end of Sunday, the case was turned over to investigations. Three days later the subject’s body was found in the lake. Other responding Sheriff’s SAR units included Sonoma, Solano, Contra Costa, Alameda, Lake and State OES CAL-ESAR along with 8 CARDA k-9 teams.

Contra Costa Mutual Aid 3/30/2004

Marin SAR responded for a missing 80 y.o. female with dementia who was last seen in a hotel in Walnut Creek the day before. Contra Costa SAR had searched the hotel and surrounding area through the night. Shortly after we arrived, the subject called from within the hotel and stated she had somehow let herself into the wrong room on a different floor and spent the night. She figured it out when she woke up and found no clothes in her closet.

Santa Cruz Mutual Aid 3/25/2004

OES requested Marin SAR to respond as part of a multi-agency management team to relieve Santa Cruz SAR who had searched through the night for a missing 3 y.o. boy near Boulder Creek. The child had been missing from the previous evening from his home, located in a dense Redwood forest on a steep hillside. Six Marin SAR members arrived late-morning and were placed into Plans and Operations. During that time, an additional 8 Marin SAR members started down to Santa Cruz. The child was located about 1:30 PM by a community volunteer, about 130 yards up and over a small ridge from the child’s home. Searchers had been close to locating the child during earlier efforts, but because he did not respond to voice calls, one had to be nearly on top of him to see him. He was a little cold when found, but otherwise in good condition. Numerous SAR, Law enforcement and Fire agencies participated in the search.

Green Gulch Search 3/21/2004

At 9:00 PM, Twenty SAR members responded for a missing 20 y.o. male hiker who left the Green Gulch Zen Center early that morning in a confused and upset state. He had left his car, wallet and cell phone at the Zen Center. SAR members were joined by four CARDA teams and Bay Area Mountain Rescue, San Mateo SAR and Muir Beach Volunteer Fire Department. Teams conducted an extensive hasty search overnight. At first light, additional K-9 teams from WOOF and SAR teams from Alameda, Sonoma, Napa, Santa Clara, the Marin County USAR team, Mounted Posse and NPS rangers expanded the search and recovered areas already searched the previous night. US Coast Guard and Sonoma H-1 also covered the search area by air. At 1:30 PM, the missing subject called from Berkeley and said he was OK. He said he had hiked out of the area to Mill Valley and hitched a ride to Berkeley the previous day. Why he left all of his car, money and possessions and went to Berkeley was not clear.

Carson Falls Rescue Response 3/19/2004

Fourteen SAR members were diverted from USAR training in Nicasio to respond for an injured hiker at Carson Falls with Water District Rangers and Marin County Fire. As SAR arrived on scene, Sonoma Sheriff’s H-1 cleared another rescue and was able to extricate the patient by air. SAR members assisted in setting up an LZ so the patient could be transferred to a ground ambulance.

Samuel P 3/18/2004

Taylor State Park Search. Marin SAR was activated to respond to assist in the search for a missing despondent man whose car was located at a trail head in S.P. Taylor State Park. During the early morning hours SAR members conducted a PLS investigation, interviews and drew up plans for first light. At 0630 a command post was set up at Devil’s gulch near the PLS and 15 ground searchers with eight CARDA K-9 teams were deployed. At mid-morning, additional SAR ground teams were requested from Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. At 2:30 PM, a Marin/CARDA team located the remains of the subject about a mile from his car, off trail up drainage. Other participating agencies included Marin Open Space District and State Park Rangers, Sheriff’s Deputies, the Sheriff’s Equestrian Unit and the CHP aviation unit for a total of forty searchers.

Ring Mountain Search 3/12/2004

Twenty-five SAR members and several CARDA dogs responded to assist Twin Cities Police at 9 PM in searching for a missing 20 y.o. woman who was last seen leaving on a hike to the Ring Mountain Open space preserve. As the first wave of teams were deployed, the missing woman called her home and said she was with friends in San Francisco.

San Rafael Evidence Search 2/18/2004

Fourteen members responded to assist San Rafael PD at first light for an evidence search after a shooting incident. Members logged 3 hours each.

San Bernardino Mutual Aid 1/21/2004

Marin SAR responded three members for a search on Mt. San Gorgonio for a missing hiker that left to climb the summit and did not return. This was the missing subjects first time using an ice ax and crampons and extreme ice conditions existed during the time of his climb. Marin was deployed with two BAMRU members to descend 2000 feet down a ridge. Conditions were challenging. No clues were located during the days search efforts. Numerous other MRA teams also responded to assist San Bernardino during the week long effort. The subject was located the next weekend by other climbers several hundred feet below the main trail down an ice chute.

San Rafael Evidence Search 1/15/2004

Eight Marin SAR members assisted San Rafael PD with an evidence search after a shooting. Members were on scene for three hours.

Mt. Tam Rescue Response 1/10/2004

While the SAR team was conducting a night navigation course on Mt. Tam, we received a request from County Fire to respond for an injured hiker on the Steep Ravine trail. Twelve SAR members broke off from the training and responded with Marin County and Stinson Beach Fire Units. The hiker in distress, an 85 y.o. male too exhausted to continue, was carried out with a litter team about a half mile to an awaiting ambulance. The man and his family were among several groups caught after dark with no lights that needed assistance out.

San Bernardino Mutual Aid 1/2/2004

Marin SAR dispatched ten MRA members to a search for a missing hiker last seen late Thursday afternoon near the top of Mt. Baldy, located in the San Gabriel Mountains on the Los Angeles/San Bernardino County line. Members drove 9 hours on Friday night and were deployed first thing Saturday morning on assignments to search drainage’s at 9000 feet. Conditions were challenging with ice in some places so hard crampons had difficulty penetrating, temperatures in the teens and high winds. Members were deployed again the next day in improved conditions to search a ridge that descended over 3000 feet in elevation. Terrain was steep and challenging. Nearly every Mountain Rescue Team in the California region was activated to support the search. The subject was located two weeks later, several hundred feet down an ice chute in San Antonio Canyon, below the Mt. Baldy bowl by an MRA team.

Storm support 1/1/2004

Several SAR members staffed SAR vehicles to assist Patrol by working road closures due to trees down and heavy rain. Soon after the activation, the storm passed and units were released.