Fish & Game searching for missing Manchester hiker in White Mountains

Randy Willett, 53, of Manchester called 911 on Tuesday. He is still missing.

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Pemigewasset Wilderness is comprised of some 45,000 acres in the upper watershed of the East Branch of the Pemigewasset River.

CONCORD, NH – At approximately 2:45 a.m. on May 2, Fish and Game Officials were notified of a 911 call from a hiker who said he was lost. The hiker told the 911 operator that he was lost and was not on a trail. He also said he had fallen in a brook. He could only give details of the name of one trail he had been on. The call was dropped before the hiker could give any other details about where he was or had been. The 911 operator was also unable to identify the hiker.                            

Fish and Game Conservation Officers were able to identify who the phone that the hiker called on belonged to, and were able to identify the hiker as Randy Willett, 53, from Manchester. They were able to speak with family members who were able to give Fish and Game Officials his agenda for his hike. Willett had planned an extended hike over four days, much of which was in the Pemigewasset Wilderness of the White Mountain National Forest.

Fish and Game Officers began searching trails on Tuesday where they suspected Willett could be. They were searching until well after dark and suspended the search until Wednesday morning.

On Wednesday morning search teams were flown into various locations by the New Hampshire Army National Guard helicopter. From there they searched multiple trails and drainages hoping to find Willett. As of late afternoon on Wednesday searchers were unable to locate Willett.

New Hampshire Fish and Game Conservation Officers were assisted by volunteers from the Pemi Valley Search and Rescue Team and the Androscoggin Valley Search and Rescue Team.