SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — After a massive six-day search, a skier who went missing in New York has now been found safe nearly 3,000 miles away in Sacramento.
Authorities launched a search for the 49-year-old skier Constantinos “Danny” Filippidis last Wednesday after his companions reported him missing. The man is a Toronto firefighter, and on Tuesday he was being checked out at a Sacramento area hospital.
“We’ve been searching overnight, and were searching to this very moment for the individual,” said searcher John Lundin at New York’s Whiteface mountain.
Officials say more than 140 people spent a combined 7,000 hours searching the rugged mountain terrain, calling in helicopters and search dogs to assist. Dozens of firefighter volunteers also flew in from Toronto.
“We are 3000 members, a tight-knit family; we really hope there’s a positive outcome here,” said Dan Vieira with the Toronto Professional Firefighters Association.
Filippidis was part of a group of Toronto firefighters making their annual ski trip until he disappeared and ended up across the country.
“He actually ended up here in Sacramento, in downtown specifically,” said Sgt. Shaun Hampton with the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputies say Filippidis called 911 from the Sacramento International airport; officers say he appeared dazed and confused and determined there was a medical issue.
“He related to the officers that he had been skiing in NY, he believed he had hit his head or had been hit in the head,”
But he told authorities he didn’t fly in.
“He said he was dropped off by a truck driver, he said he slept a lot during the trip here, and he didn’t have a lot of recollection of how he got from A to B,” said Hampton.
Deputies say Filipidis was still wearing the same ski clothes he wore when he was reported missing.
But he had no obvious signs of trauma.
“He was adamant that he was not the victim of any crime,” said Hampton.
A missing skier found thousands of miles away, and while it brings relief for so many. But many questions remain, as to “what” exactly happened? No one knows yet.
“We’re extremely happy for Danny, his family, his friends, that he is alive and they will be reunited,” said Frank Ramagnano
the Toronto Professional Firefighters President.