Upper Burrell man, missing for more than 24 hours, found
An Upper Burrell man who had been missing for more than 24 hours was found alive as darkness fell Tuesday night.
Firefighters found Christopher Linkenheimer, 41, around 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, not long before they planned to call off their search for the night.
Upper Burrell police Chief Ken Pate said Linkenheimer had last been seen at his Myers Drive home around 6 p.m. Monday. His mother, with whom he lives, reported him missing Tuesday morning.
Pate said Linkenheimer has a history of depression and mental issues.
“It's a life-and-death situation,” Pate said while the search was underway. “We don't think he's capable of taking care of himself right now.”
About 75 volunteers from 11 departments in Westmoreland and Allegheny counties fanned out from a staging area in a parking lot at Penn State New Kensington.
Knowing Linkenheimer had left on foot, they combed a 10-square-mile area around Myers Drive, Route 780, Hartge Road and Milligantown Road using heat-seeking cameras, all-terrain vehicles, search dogs and a helicopter.
With the search area mostly wooded, the canopy hindered progress, Pate said. There was concern heat-seeking cameras would not find Linkenheimer if he had died.
But in the end, as Pate said, it was not bloodhounds or technology that found Linkenheimer; it was “boots on the ground.”
An Upper Burrell firefighter found Linkenheimer in the woods about 300 yards from his home, Upper Burrell fire Chief Bryan Fitch said. Pate said authorities believe he had been there since Monday night.Alcohol was a factor, Pate said.
Linkenheimer was stable but barely conscious, Pate said. Fitch said he had suffered some cuts to the head. He was taken by helicopter to Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh, where he was listed in fair condition Tuesday night.
Authorities tracked Linkenheimer's cellphone in their attempt to find him. There was no record of him making any calls after he was reported missing.
Two “pings” to Linkenheimer's phone indicated it was in the Milligantown Road area. That actually took searchers in the wrong direction, which Pate said afterward is why authorities don't rely exclusively on it.
Linkenheimer had his phone when he was found, Pate said.
Brian C. Rittmeyer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4701 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pickup takes out 40-foot pine tree in Harrison; officer injured
- Burglaries in Oakmont similar to break-ins in other communities
- Burrell, psychologist settle lawsuit
- ‘He’s still a part of this team’: Burrell honors player who died during preseason
- Deer Lakes releases info on administrators’ raises
- End in sight for Route 28 construction
- Late-night fire guts East Deer house; homeowner escapes without injuries
- Free lunch for Highlands, New Ken schools eliminates stigma
- Harmar police make 2 drug arrests as part of crackdown on crime
- Cause of Harrison mobile home fire can’t be found
- Deer Lakes teachers authorize strike if contract not reached by Christmas