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76-year-old Kentucky man goes missing on Willow Creek fishing trip

  • Author: Anchorage Daily News
  • Updated: June 29
  • Published June 28

A search is underway for a 76-year-old Kentucky man in Willow after he failed to return from a fly-fishing trip, Alaska State Troopers say.

William Hartlage, 76, from Louisville, Kentucky, went missing on June 27, 2019 during a fishing trip in Willow Creek. (Photo courtesy Alaska State Troopers.)

Around 7 p.m. Thursday, a family member reported William Hartlage of Louisville was overdue up Willow Creek at the Susitna River, troopers said.

Two boat crews left Deshka Landing just after 11 p.m., with the help of a Rescue Coordination Center helicopter, for a search north of the Susitna and east along Willow Creek, they said. Hartlage wasn’t found.

MAT-SAR is mobilizing a ground search with the help of troopers, state park rangers and a troopers helicopter.

Hartlage is described as 6 feet 2 inches tall, 160 pounds, with gray hair and beard. He primarily wears a light brown or tan flyfishing vest and gray hip waders. He was last seen wearing a brown baseball cap with a yellow/pink flyfishing lure attached and may have worn a large round boonie hat for sun protection.

Anyone fishing in the area of Willow Creek on Thursday with information regarding Hartlage is encouraged to contact Alaska State Troopers at 907-745-2131.

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