CONTACT:
Lt. Robert Bryant: 603-271-3127
Jane Vachon: 603-271-3211
May 5, 2009
                 
Franconia Notch: Search On for Missing Angler; Injured Hiker Rescued Monday

CONCORD, N.H. - Two incidents in the Franconia Notch area in the past 24 hours have required response from search and rescue personnel.  An extensive search is in progress for 63-year-old Gerard Perron of Claremont, N.H., who left Claremont about 3 p.m. on Friday, May 1, to drive up to Franconia Notch to hike and fish.  Perron reportedly planned to return home on Sunday.  When he did not show up for work on Monday morning, his daughter was concerned and reported him missing. Searchers located his car at a trailhead parking lot in Franconia Notch State Park, which is now serving as the command post for the search.  Perron left only a very general itinerary, so rescue personnel are fanning out to cover all the trail systems and watershed drainages in the surrounding area. 

"It's grueling work, but we know Perron was going fishing, so we have to canvass all the streams and drainages in the area, as well the trails," said Sgt. Brian Suttmeier of New Hampshire Fish and Game Law Enforcement.  "The fact that we found his vehicle in the Franconia Notch parking lot is our best clue at the moment."

Numerous N.H. Fish and Game Conservation Officers are involved in the search, as well as volunteer personnel from New England K-9 Search and Rescue; Upper Valley Search and Rescue; and Pemigewasset Valley Search and Rescue.

Fish and Game Conservation Officers were called to respond to a separate incident at Franconia Notch on Monday afternoon (May 4).  A woman hiking with a companion on the Bridle Path Trail slipped on a rock, injuring her ankle, and had to be carried out by rescuers. Sally Sise, of Vergennes, Vermont, age 64, was coming down the trail about 1.5 miles from the Greenleaf Hut when the accident occurred.  Rescuers were called at about 4:00 p.m., and she was carried off the mountain by Fish and Game Conservation Officers and about a dozen members of Pemigewasset Valley Search and Rescue. Sise was later evaluated at a local hospital. 

No further information on either incident is available at this time.

Updates on the ongoing search for missing angler Gerard Perron will be posted on the N.H. Fish and Game website at www.wildnh.com.

For information on being safe while hiking, visit www.hikesafe.com.

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