Officials and volunteers from 17 agencies are still searching for Chance Englebert, a Moorcroft man who was reported missing early Saturday evening in Gering, Nebraska.
Baylee Englebert, Chance’s wife, said that it is not characteristic for Chance to walk out and not come back.
“This is completely unlike him,” Baylee said Tuesday morning.
Chance was one of the 580 Blackjewel LLC employees who were told to leave and not report for work after the company’s bankruptcy was denied July 1. Baylee said she doesn’t think that has anything to do with Chance’s disappearance.
He had already secured another job at Blakeman Propane in Moorcroft and was supposed to start work Monday.
He had worked at the Belle Ayr mine for about three years before Blackjewel declared bankruptcy and closed the mine, along with the Eagle Butte mine.
Chance and Baylee, along with their newborn baby, were visiting family in Gering, Nebraska, over the weekend when Chance went out for a walk about 7 p.m. Saturday.
Baylee said that when Chance gets upset he’ll sometimes take a walk around the block to cool off.
Capt. Jason Rogers with the Gering Police Department said the last confirmed sighting of Chance was at 7:49 p.m. Saturday when a woman saw him walking past a Domino’s Pizza restaurant in Gering heading toward Scottsbluff.
Baylee said she got word that someone last saw Chance between 9 and 10 p.m. Saturday near the small town of Terrytown standing under a tree during a storm.
When the storm passed, the woman said she saw him run toward the North Platte River over a bridge.
Engelbert is described as about 5 feet, 9 inches tall with a medium build, sun-lightened brown hair, mustache and goatee. When last seen, he was wearing a short-sleeved Wrangler shirt, jeans, old-school Ropers and a black-and-white trucker cap.
Rogers said that several agencies have pulled out all the stops in the search. Helicopters are surveying the area, a search and rescue team out of Wyoming is helping along with the K-9 unit out of Torrington.
Volunteer firefighters from several area communities also are helping as well as local law enforcement agencies.
Rogers said that the search teams are using raw cellphone data to try and coordinate Chance’s location. They are focusing now on the south and southwest parts of Scottsbluff and are trying to get video footage from area businesses and homes to help their search.
Baylee said security guards at the Walmart in Scottsbluff may have seen him and they are working on getting the video footage from that store to help.
Baylee also said police are waiting to get more information from Verizon Wireless and Google to help track her husband.
Rogers described the terrain they are searching as a mixed bag, with the North Platte River having sand and mud due to recent storms as well as some brush, trees and two-lane highways connecting it all.
The search crews had to stop briefly Monday due to a severe thunderstorm. Rogers said the local weather has been tricky to navigate, but thankfully the weather Tuesday is sunny and clear.
Rogers said that anyone with information about Chance or clues of his whereabouts should contact the Gering Police Department at 308-436-5088.