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November 16, 2010
Conn. Man Found Safe After Search
Augusta, Maine - A 52-year-old Connecticut man who came to Maine to hunt was found safe today in Shirley after losing contact with others in his hunting party.
Robert Sokolowski, 52, of East Granby, Conn., has hunted before in the Shirley area, and on Monday morning he planned to go to an area where he killed a deer several years ago.
At around 11:30 a.m., several members of his hunting party heard about six shots from the area where Mr. Sokolowski was hunting. They were unable to make contact with him.
The Maine Warden Service was called around 7:15 p.m. Monday through the Piscataquis County Sheriff's Office, and initiated a search that continued through the night.
Wardens fired shots from several areas looking for return shots and there were none.
This morning (Tuesday), seven Game Wardens and several members of Maine Search and Rescue Dogs continued the search on the ground while MWS Chief Pilot Charlie Later searched from the air.
At 9:15 a.m. today, Later spotted Mr. Sokolowski, who had moved to a clearing when he heard the plane. Searchers on the ground were given GPS coordinates to the area near Crouse Allen Road, and Mr. Sokolowski then was taken out of the woods by canoe to the east side of the Piscataqus River.
Mr. Sokolowski told Game Wardens that he became disoriented late in the day and stayed near the river all night.
He was not hurt.
Mr. Sokolowski said he did not hear any of the signal shots fired by Game Wardens throughout the night. This was most likely due to the river flow being high and loud because of recent heavy rains, according to MWS Lieut. Kevin Adam.
Mr. Sokolowski did have rounds to fire if he had heard the signal shots. The six shots fired during the middle of the day were not from him.
Hunters should be advised to be prepared and carry matches, some food, know how to use a compass and GPS and be sure to carry them when heading into the woods.
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