Monroeville remains those of missing Butler man

| Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Butler man told his sister he was going to live in the wilderness before disappearing 10 years ago, Allegheny County police said Monday after the man's remains were identified.

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office said the bones found near a Duquesne Light Co. substation power plant in Monroeville on Friday are the remains of Anthony Pataky, who was 53 when he was reported missing in 2002.

Pataky's family has been notified of the discovery, said Tom Rabickow, a forensics supervisor in the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office. Family members didn't return calls for comment.

Turtle Creek Mayor Adam Forgie was involved in the search for Pataky when he was a firefighter for the Turtle Creek Volunteer Fire Department.

"I hope (the discovery) brings closure for the family," he said.

Pataky, a resident of Meadows Manor Personal Care Home in Butler, was a Vietnam veteran with psychological problems that included frequent flashbacks, county police Sgt. Scott Scherer said. The owner of Meadows couldn't be reached for comment.

Pataky had been visiting his sister in Turtle Creek when he was reported missing July 7, 2002, Scherer said.

He was last seen wearing a white T-shirt and black pants with a hole in one of the legs. He had only been missing a few hours when his sister called police, but she was concerned because of his psychological problems, Scherer said.

A police search began a few days later, Turtle Creek police Chief Dale Kraeer said. It was unclear why it took that long to begin a search.

Turtle Creek police worked with canines and the state police, who conducted an air search, to try to locate Pataky, Kraeer said. Authorities checked an area close to where Pataky was eventually found, but the area's steep terrain made the search more difficult, he said.

"Unless the dog had a hit, they would never have (taken) a dog down there," he said.

An autopsy is scheduled for today, Rabickow said.

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