A Kotzebue man went missing last Friday, and after several days of searching, his body has now been found.
Late on December 1st, Alaska State Troopers received a report that 32-year-old Jared Walker was several hours overdue in returning to Kotzebue from a camp about 10 miles north, near the mouth of the Noatak River. He had last been heard from in the mid-afternoon.
According to AST, search and rescue efforts were quickly mounted by Troopers and community members in surrounding villages. Walker was not immediately found at the cabin.
Tuesday around noon, a family member participating in the search located Walker’s body near Jones Camp, about six miles north of Kotzebue.
Alaska State Trooper Public Information Officer Megan Peters says the body is currently being recovered by Troopers. She says it’s good, at least, that someone knew about his plans:
“It is so important, especially in the wintertime, and just being out in the elements, that we get that heads-up as soon as possible, and in this case, that did happen. There was somebody that was expecting him, and when he didn’t show up, they did contact Troopers, and search-and-rescuers, volunteer community members, they did go out looking for him. Unfortunately, they just didn’t find him until it was too late.”
Walker’s body will be sent to the State Medical Examiner’s office in Anchorage for an autopsy. His next of kin have been notified.
Image at top: The Kobuk River Delta, near Kotzebue (Photo: Lauren Frost, KNOM).