Missing man found safe after car spotted

Oamaru man Russell Bryant has been found safe in Springs Junction, after being reported missing...
Oamaru man Russell Bryant has been found safe in Springs Junction, after being reported missing on Saturday. Photo: Supplied.
The power of community has helped a missing Oamaru man return home.

Russell Bryant (61) was reported missing along with his white Ford Ranger on Saturday, after he had not been seen for 24 hours.

After police and family members put up social media posts — they were shared more than 1000 times collectively — Mr Bryant was found yesterday morning in Springs Junction, on the West Coast.

Family spokeswoman Kelly Bryant said a man, who saw her Facebook post, contacted her saying he saw the vehicle in the area at 6.20am. She contacted police, and between 10am and 11am, they found Mr Bryant nearby.

She expressed a "massive thank you" to the man who recognised the vehicle, and the phone call notifying family Mr Bryant had been found was incredible.

"It was overwhelming," Ms Bryant said.

The family was "incredibly grateful" to the community for being diligent looking for his vehicle, a key factor in finding him.

"It’s just really good. With social media ... sometimes people don’t have the best intentions, but to see the community really actually care and put plans in place to keep and eye out for him and take the time to identify him and his truck — it’s a big positive."

It had been hard to "pinpoint" for the family and police where Mr Bryant could have been, and the police did a great job.

The family would continue to support Mr Bryant as he returned home, and it was important the community was supported too, she said.

kayla.hodge@odt.co.nz

 

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