Suicides and Suicide
Many law enforcement and SAR agencies either donít wish to
be bothered or just go out to the scene and perform a quick
search and then call it ĒgoodĒ:
When a loved one has left a note or a message that he/she
is going to commit suicide, please donít take their
The youngest person I found dead, was a young 11 yo child
who was mad at his father for not allowing him (the child)
to go to football camp. He walked up into the hills and sat
down watched the sunset, then took his 22 cal rifle and shot
Searchers. Remember when a person is intent
on committing suicide, they usually travel up high on
a hillside, mountainside to be, ďCloser to GodĒ. Or
down low to a nearby water source, lake, river, creek
to, ďCleanse them selves before deathĒ.
Iíve found several men and women, who have just walked right
into the water and drowned themselves. Iíve also found
several men who walked into the woods, sat next to a large
tree, watched the sun rise or set and blew their brains out.
Others who have hung themselves. Some who have jumped to
their deaths over bridges, off buildings, over cliffs.
So, if youíre a searcher, look at a Topo map of the area. Go
to the PLS (Point last seen) and get a scent article of the
missing person. Track their scent with a search dog. Search
their home and surrounding garages, sheds, RVís first. There
are times Iíve found the victim dead on the property.
If the scent trail leads to a water source, then conduct a
water search and locate their remains. If it heads deep into
the wilderness, conduct a track / trail with a search dog
and try to find their remains.
Some people are just begging for help and have no intention
of killing themselves.
When / if you find them, approach with caution. Especially
if they might be armed.
Get training before the next call on suicide prevention and
consultation. Iíve talked four people over the years into
not killing themselves.
Families. If you have a family member missing, call
the police. If they refuse to go look, then take on that
responsibility yourself. Gather friends and family and maps
of the area. Figure out areas of highest probability. Parks,
views, and other areas the person enjoyed visiting in the
past. Churches, cemeteries, rivers, boat ramps.
Ask the police to PING the victimís cellular telephone. This
will give you an area to start searching in.
If the victim drove a vehicle and your volunteer searchers
find his / her vehicle.
DONíT TOUCH ITĒ.
Freeze the scene. Call 911 and let the police determine if
the victim drove it there or if this is a murder made to
look like a suicide. If you find the victim dead, donít
touch them. Back off, call 911.