75-Year-Old Marine Veteran Goes Missing While on Hike

by Craig Garrett

Family and authorities are still searching for an elderly Marine veteran from Texas who disappeared a week ago. A missing adult notice from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department states that 75-year-old Rock Stanley was last seen on August 23rd. The information was shared by the Red Rock Search and Rescue team on Twitter.

Rock’s grandaughter, Courtney Stanley, spoke of her grandfather’s experience hiking in parks. “He has done this trail before, and he always makes it home about 6 p.m,” she told KSNV-TV. “He’s done this so many times, and it’s never thought, you know, this would happen to him. He’s experienced, he’s smart. Just was completely unexpected.”

Stanley visited the mountain by himself last Tuesday. This was out of character for him since he normally hikes with a partner. His granddaughter told the press that the Marine veteran had been hiking these trails solo once a year for the past 30 years. People who saw him said he looked lost and confused. “They said that he was asking people, where are we? Where are you? And just seeming kind of confused,” she said. “They noticed his legs were shaking and she (a hiker) remembers thinking to herself that this is the beginning of the trail, you know, he probably needs to turn back.”

Family Members Believe a Medication Change Caused the Marine Veterans’ Behavior

Courtney believes that type of behavior was not normal for the typically active Marine veteran.“We do know that he has recently been put on new medication and one of the Rangers brought up to us that the elevation might have cost side effects with his blood pressure medicine.”

Stanley never returned to The Retreat at Mount Charleston, where he and his wife Karen were staying. However, the Marine veteran managed to send a text to his son, Brian, last Tuesday before 9 in the evening. The text said ‘Lost in woods. Trying to backtrack. Tell Karen.’ They were eventually able to contact him by phone and talk with him last Wednesday.

Rock’s son, Ken Stanley recalled the conversation. “My brother tried to call my dad and randomly he answered, and it was at 5:20 a.m., local time here 7:20 a.m. Texas time,” Ken Stanley said. “He said he’s with someone that’s helping him and then when they wake up, they’re going to take him back to the lodge where we’re staying.” It’s uncertain if Stanley was with someone or still lost on the mountain, according to Ken.

The search effort for Stanley includes assistance from the LVMPD, National Guard, and Civil Air Patrol. On Friday, while crews took a break in their efforts to find Stanley, his sons and grandson flew in from Texas to resume the search off of the trails and traversing through canyons.