Missing AZ man's truck found in NM flood debris - KCTV5


Missing AZ man's truck found in NM flood debris

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Flood waters along the Gila River. (Source: Gila National Forest) Flood waters along the Gila River. (Source: Gila National Forest)

New Mexico State Police say they have found the vehicle of an 83-year-old Arizona man who went missing from a tiny town isolated by flooding.

Aerial searchers spotted Howard Bassett's truck wrapped in mud and flood debris in Silver Creek off State Road 159 on Wednesday. Police said Bassett was not in the vehicle. The truck was towed from the area Wednesday night.

Bassett was reported missing after authorities said he was evacuated from the Silver Creek Inn in Mogollon on Saturday and did not return to collect his possessions, according to authorities.

Police said Bassett drove off in a Chevy Colorado with Arizona licenses plates. State police are searching N.M. 159 and the surrounding area.

Bassett's house sitter said that he was expected to return to Chino Valley Monday night. The man's daughter, from Sierra Vista, is in NM helping with the search, according to the sitter.

The Gila National Forest, still recovering a wildfire last year that was the state's largest in its history, received around eight inches of rain last week.

Authorities were forced Tuesday to deliver supplies to residents of Mogollon after flooding destroyed the only road into town.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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