Search for overdue diabetic without medication

April 4, 1986
Geology Tour Road, Joshua Tree

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By Rob Gardner

The National Park Service (NPS) called upon the Mountain Rescue Association (MRA), including the RMRU, to assist in a search for a missing hiker, Phillip Cassadey, (age 25). Mr. Cassadey was last seen at 3:45 p.m. on Saturday near the base of Lost Horse Mountain. The search was initiated by NPS deploying hasty teams by 8:10 p.m. Saturday. There was a great concern that the hiker may have been in difficulty as he was a diabetic and he had left his insulin in his car.

The NPS had California Rescue Dog Association (CARDA) members with their search dogs, Joshua Tree Search and Rescue (JOSAR) members, and an El Toro Marine Base Search and Rescue helicopter searching through the night. The MRA members joined the search Sunday morning.

Shortly after MRA teams arrived. it was discovered that Mr. Cassadey was not at Joshua Tree National Monument. Reportedly, upon returning from his hike he was unable to find either his vehicle or his friend. He did find a road and hitch-hiked a ride home. Apparently, it never occurred to Mr. Cassadey that anybody would be looking for him. He was found, sleeping, at his apartment in Riverside by his mother when she went there to obtain better scent articles for the search dogs. Mr. Cassadey's mother immediately notified the NPS.