Paul Berry, search manager with Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue, shows areas of north Nanaimo that were part of a search by SAR and RCMP teams to find Wayne Strilesky, 75, who went missing Monday and was located Tuesday. CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin

Vancouver Island senior found safe with help from six search and rescue teams

Wayne Strilesky found safe in thick brush in north Nanaimo

After a search of an area from Nanaimo’s Green Lake to the Lantzville’s beaches, a 75-year-old man was found not far from where he went missing.

Parksville’s Wayne Strilesky walked away from a residence on Manhatten Way in north Nanaimo on Monday and was found shortly after noon Tuesday by a search and rescue canine team about 300 metres from where he went missing.

The search area was combed by Nanaimo RCMP and search and rescue teams Monday and Tuesday.

“He’s in good condition and he’ll be assessed and returned to family,” said Paul Berry, search manager with Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue.

Nanaimo RCMP, in a press release, thanked the media and members of the public for sharing the missing person advisory.

Berry did not have more information about Strilesky’s condition as the man had not yet been brought back to search headquarters to be assessed, and Berry said search teams would let Strilesky’s family speak with him first.

“Wayne Strilesky had been actually celebrating his birthday at his brother’s home here on Manhatten [Way] and had disappeared sometime around 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon,” said Berry. “Wayne has pretty advanced dementia and it’s not the first time he’s wandered away, but in past experiences, he has sought help when he realized he was lost.”

Strilesky allegedly hadn’t sought help in this instance, which prompted the search operation.

RELATED: Parksville man, 75, goes missing from north Nanaimo home

On Tuesday morning, search teams from Campbell River to Lake Cowichan – six teams comprised of about 28 search and rescue technicians – were searching on the ground with help from Nanaimo RCMP members, conducting investigative work, and an RCMP helicopter.



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