76-year-old man reunited with family after going missing for 25 hours
STIRLING CITY, Calif. —
Thomas Umble, a married father of three, went for a drive with his dog on Wednesday afternoon near Stirling City.
According to his family, the two got out and went for a run, which is the last anyone saw of them for over 24 hours.
That changed Thursday afternoon when Plumas County's Search and Rescue Team found Umble alive and well near the High Lakes.
Umble's daughter, Kristy Williams, says it was a huge relief for the family.
"We are trembling with excitement," Williams said. "We have been on pins and needles waiting for updates around the clock for the last 25 hours, and we're just thrilled."
Deputies from the Butte County Sheriff's Office faced an uphill battle searching for Umble, as three to four inches of snow fell on the area overnight, leading deputies to call in a search and rescue crew.
The crews were searching near the intersection of Powelton and Skyway Road, just a few minutes north of Stirling City. They were called in Wednesday night when the snow became too deep, but by Thursday afternoon you could hear the dripping of melting snow and ice all around the area.
The improved weather helped the search and rescue team locate Umble through the use of helicopters and snow vehicles, which could not be used when conditions were poor.
Miranda Bowersox, with the Butte County Sheriff's Office, has advice for anyone thinking of venturing out in the snow by themselves.
"When you do plan on going to the snow, it's always a smart idea to let somebody know where you plan to go exactly and when you plan to return," Bowersox said. "Always go prepared. Take lots of water, take food, take blankets, and be prepared to spend the night in the snow."
Umble was returned to his family by the search and rescue crew. His family declined to have news media present when he returned home, but they want it known that they're grateful to law enforcement for their hard work in finding him.