GREGG COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - The human remains found near the Sabine River have been positively identified as a missing man.
Family members say that Loyd Thrasher was located on Tuesday during a search of the area by numerous agencies. They especially thanked the Harleton Fire Department Search and Rescue K9 team for their assistance.
Law enforcement in one East Texas county desperately search for a man who turned up missing near the Sabine River, leaving a rental car behind.
It started Monday with a patrol deputy spotting a car just off FM 2087 in Gregg County on the south side of the Sabine River bridge.
“A patrol officer noticed that the vehicle had the door ajar and the trunk ajar so he stopped to check it out. Found a K-9 in the vehicle. Hours later he comes back sees the vehicle is still here. It didn’t look right with the doors open sitting off a major roadway back here in the woods,” says Gregg County sheriff’s office lieutenant Josh Tubb.
A check of the vehicle found is was a rental to 78-year-old Loyd Keith Thrasher. Family says Thrasher had disappeared with his 2 dogs, and reported him missing on Tuesday.
Gregg County assisted Kilgore police in starting a search.
Tracking and cadaver dogs were brought by volunteers from Harleton, and boats were brought in to search the river. Curiously the family says one of Thrasher’s dogs turned up in Lakeport.
They say Thrasher suffers dementia and had not had medication for two weeks.
"This meaning he's possibly being at risk. At that point we did not know we had an at risk person, we didn't know that until the following day," Tubb says.
Searching each hill and ravine, and along the riverbanks, every brush pile and fallen tree was checked, as family members looked on.
"Initially we search approximately 200 yards on each side of the river. Doing what we need to do to best serve the family and this person that's missing," says Tubb.
But late in the day, a game warden assisted by a cadaver dog, located remains along the river.
A justice of the peace was called in and examination with be done to determine identification.
Members of Longview's 'water rescue team' were also on hand to assist in the search.
Officially Kilgore police say the search is not over until the remains are positively identified.