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Search and rescue ends with man found safely

Police Chief Oscar Lewis and Fire Chief Willard "Buster" Crocker look at an iPad displaying the terrain and layout of Hogan Park and the surrounding area during Saturday morning's search and rescue effort.

Police Chief Oscar Lewis and other officials talk with Ellis "Tim" Thomas and the man who gave him a ride to incident command after Thomas was found in an area behind Hogan Park Saturday morning.
By Paul Keane

A Saturday morning search and rescue effort turned out well for a 75-year-old Waynesboro man.

The Waynesboro Police Department received a call around 9 p.m. Friday that Ellis "Tim" Thomas, 75, had left his home and disappeared. By 10:15 a.m., he had been found safe and sound behind Hogan Park.

According to WPD Chief Oscar Lewis, Thomas was at his home Friday night and had been given his medicine by his daughter around 7 p.m. The daughter took a short nap and, when she awaked, discovered that her father was missing.

Officers with the WPD conducted a search Friday night, but it was limited due to darkness.

The search resumed Saturday morning, with a number of agencies being called to assist. Besides the WPD, the Wayne County Sheriff's Department, Waynesboro Fire Department, Jones County Search and Rescue and the Wayne County Volunteer Fire Department were working the search. The canine unit from the South Mississippi Correctional Facility in Leakesville, along with the Lamar County and Lamar County search and rescue squads had been notified and were en route with canine units when Thomas was found.

It was stated that Thomas, who lives on Sunset Street, used to have dog pens behind Hogan Park. An emergency operations command operative with an airplane saw a man step out of a building behind Hogan park and get into a vehicle. The vehicle then drove up to incident command in the Optimist Building at Hogan Park and Thomas was in the front passenger seat.

Family members were notified and they came and picked him up.
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