MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) – A father and son from St. Louis Park, Minn. have been reported missing after they left last week to go hiking in Colorado, according to a family spokesperson.
Damian McManus, 51, and his son Evan, 18, took an impromptu trip to Mount Evans, Colorado for Evan’s spring break.
While they were camping, Evan’s mother Katherine, twin sister Lauren, and family friend Andrea Bouzara went on a trip to Mexico.
Katherine had last heard from her husband in an email Wednesday, and when the girls didn’t hear from him again Katherine assumed they had bad cell service in the mountains.
A family spokesperson said Evan’s girlfriend attempted to contact Katherine on Sunday, concerned that she hadn’t heard from him since last Wednesday.
“She was very concerned that she hadn’t heard from him. It’s very unusual that he doesn’t get in touch with her,” Bouzara said.
Family officials then reached out to officials in Colorado.
Authorities in Colorado said an alpine rescue team was paged at about 3 p.m. Sunday on a report of two missing and overdue hikers. Authorities have been searching for them in an area of Echo Lake on the north shoulder of Mount Evans, which has an elevation of more than 10,000 feet. Efforts to contact the two men have been unsuccessful because of poor cell phone reception in the area.
Authorities called off search efforts Sunday night due to dark and cold conditions.
The search resumed Monday with rescuers, a helicopter and dogs all searching for the father and son.
Alpine Rescue Team spokesman Bill Barwick said Monday searchers are not sure the father and son are equipped for wintry conditions in the Rocky Mountains.
“I know that Damien is an experienced hiker he had, um, experience in the British military,” Bouzara said. “He does these types of things on occasion, but I don’t’ know if they are, like, avid hikers.”
Barwick says the two men left for a camping trip on Wednesday and were due back on Sunday. They had driven to Colorado from Minnesota and planned to stop and hike along the way as part of their father-son trip for spring break.
Evan and Lauren are both seniors at St. Louis Park High School.
Bouzara said students at the high school are struggling to get by knowing one of their classmates is missing.
Katherine and Lauren went to Denver Monday and will be heading to the rescue site.
They are asking that people pray that Damian and Evan are found safely.
“They are very faithful and really trust that God is watching over their family. And they’re keeping hope that they’re gonna be found safely,” Bouzara said.
A Facebook page has been set up for people to leave messages for the family.
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