Missing Pine-Strawberry Fire Chief Morris Found

Pine-Strawberry Fire District Gary Morris
Pine-Strawberry Fire District Chief Gary Morris [Photo courtesy Pine-Strawberry Fire District]

Northern Arizona – Strawberry Pine Fire Chief Gary Morris, who has been missing since Tuesday morning after a multi-day hike in rugged terrain near Payson, has been located.

According to officials, the 73 year-old Morris saw the search helicopter. When he was finally able to get cell service, he texted the Gila County Sheriff’s Office.

Officials say he is in good condition

“Gary is a great friend and also our Gila County GOP Chairman. I have hiked with Gary down into Fossil Creek and back, and even though he’s a decade older than me, it was a real challenge for me to keep up with him, he’s in terrific shape. I didn’t get much sleep last night while worrying about Gary, so I’m so thankful to God and relieved that he appears to be okay,” said Arizona State Representative Bob Thorpe.

Search and Rescue teams and a DPS helicopter have been searching for him since Tuesday morning, when he didn’t end his hike and check in with his wife as scheduled.

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