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Search for missing Huron man suspended

Heather Chapin-Fowler • Oct 22, 2010 at 12:40 AM

Land, air and water searches have yielded no answers in the mysterious disappearance of Nathan Dickey.

The latest development in the search: On Thursday a volunteer worked with police and used his helicopter to conduct a search by air for the Iraq War veteran, who police fear drowned in the Huron River this past weekend. 

Huron firefighters, meanwhile, suspended a water search for Dickey, saying they’ll be available if someone spots something in the water.

Five days after Dickey disappeared, there is still no answer to the question his family and friends are asking: What happened? 

Dickey, 21, of Canton Avenue in Huron, was last seen shortly after 2 a.m. Sunday as he walked away drunk from a group of friends after drinking at i5’s Bar and Grill in downtown Huron.

Sunday evening, Dickey’s housemate, Meredith Gallegos, reported him missing.   

Since then, police have had no luck tracking him down.

Earlier this week, officers used a bloodhound to follow Dickey’s scent in the area, while dive teams combed the bottom of the Huron River in hopes of finding even a clue.

Dickey’s shoe was found floating in the river earlier this week, leading police to speculate he may have drowned in the river. Even so, there’s no hard evidence of that, police said.

A puddle of vomit was found near the Huron River Tuesday afternoon, which only fueled speculation that Dickey walked to river’s edge after he wandered away from friends Sunday morning. 

According to a police report, Dickey was highly intoxicated and was upset at the group he’d been drinking with.

Dickey has been in the Ohio National Guard since March 2007. 

He spent the last year in Iraq working as a combat engineer, the Army’s version of a construction worker, according to James Sims, of the National Guard’s public affairs office.

Dickey was deployed overseas in May 2009, serving with the 1192nd Engineering Co. until he returned home in May. He’s currently an active service member with the National Guard, attending monthly drills, Sims said.

“As far as him being declared missing by local authorities, I’m not sure what that will do to his drill orders,” Sims said.

Dickey had previously lived in the Columbus area where his grandfather, estranged wife and 11-month-old daughter still reside. Most recently he was living in the Canton Avenue home with Gallegos. 

Read previous stories on Nathan Dickey here: 

Friends hope, wait, pray ...

River search ends ...

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