Grand Canyon Missing Rafter Search
Search for Missing River Rafter Moves to Limited Continuous Mode
September 1, 2018
Grand Canyon, Ariz. - On Friday, September 7 at approximately 11:00 A.M., a Canyoneers commercial river trip was preparing for day hike at Clear Creek (RM 85), when a 65 year old female passenger went into the river while disembarking. The woman's husband Mike Howard, 67, jumped into the river to assist her. They both swam through Clear Creek Rapid, before she was rescued by the river trip.
Howard, of Simi Valley, CA, was last seen in Clear Creek Rapid and is described as 6' tall and weighing 190 pounds. He has blue eyes, gray and brown hair, and a long gray beard. He was wearing a yellow T-shirt, shorts, and Keen water shoes.
The Canyoneers river trip immediately continued to Phantom Ranch where they reported the incident. Searchers set up containment at the Silver Bridge and swiftwater rescuers began searching the Colorado River by zodiac motorboat. The woman was medevaced to the South Rim and transported to Flagstaff Medical Center.
On Saturday, September 8 search efforts involved ground and swiftwater rescuers searching by zodiac motorboat.
With no additional clues and increased water turbidity, the search has been scaled back to limited continuous mode. Flyers with Howard's picture and description are posted at Lees Ferry, Phantom Ranch and other take out locations downriver. Anyone who may have information that could help in the search for Howard should call National Park Service Silent Witness Line at 928-638-7840. No additional information is available at this time.