UPDATE: Ashland hiker found dead

UPDATE: An Ashland man who had been missing since heading out on a hike early Friday was found dead Monday in the woods near Dead Indian Memorial Road seven hours after a passerby spotted the man's vehicle.

Jack Copley Loessi, 69, died of a self-inflicted gunshot, said Jackson County sheriff's Lt. Pat Rowland.

Loessi left his home at about 8 a.m. Friday, indicating he would go on a hike and return home around noon.

After he didn't return late Friday, his family reported him missing to the Ashland Police Department, police said.

A passerby spotted Loessi's teal 1998 Toyota Corolla earlier Sunday in the 11600 block of Dead Indian Memorial Road at about 11 a.m. Monday and reported it to police, said Ashland police Sgt. Bob Smith.

Police called Jackson and Klamath counties search and rescue teams. At least 42 search and rescue team members combed the hiking trails near the road for seven hours before a canine unit located Loessi's body, Rowland said. Loessi was found about one-fourth of a mile away from his vehicle in the woods near a landing on Skid Road, an old logging road off of Dead Indian Memorial Road, he said.

Search and rescue members were able to manually recover the body, Rowland said. No suicide note was found, he said.

The Jackson County Medical Examiner is investigating the death.


Original story

Ashland police are asking for the public's help in locating a missing 69-year-old man from Ashland who went on a hike at about 8 a.m. Friday, May 22, 2009 and didn't return to his home.

Jack Copley Loessi had indicated he would return home at noon Friday. It was unclear where he went for his hike.

He drove away from his residence in a teal 1998 Toyota Corolla with Oregon license plate 550 DSV. Popular hiking trailheads in the Ashland area have been checked, but there have been no reports of sightings of the vehicle nor of Loessi.

Loessi, who is an avid hiker and in good physical condition, is described as a white male, 6 feet tall and weighing about 170 pounds. He is partially bald with gray hair and blue eyes. He was last seen wearing a tan, plaid shirt, white pants and hiking boots.

Anyone with information is asked to call Ashland police at 482-5211.

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