CHURCHTOWN—The body of young Chatham man was found after an intensive search in the area he was last seen.
The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office started investigating a missing person report in the early morning hours of November 25.
Martin C. Schmitt, 20, of Chatham was last seen standing next to his car at a County Route 27 residence at 11:30 p.m. November 24. He was reported missing shortly after midnight.
Mr. Schmitt left his vehicle and personal belongings at the residence on Route 27. He was reportedly wearing a green fleece pullover, black basketball shorts, and black sneakers. He also had a tattoo of a sturgeon on left forearm. The Sheriff’s Office put out a press release about the young man, along with photographs.
Sheriff’s deputies with the assistance of State Police resources conducted an extensive search near the residence and in the surrounding areas. Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Lieutenant John Rivero said by phone this week that dozens of officers on foot, State Police with one or more tracking canines, the Sheriff’s Office drone and SP aviation units joined in the search.
Mr. Schmitt’s body was discovered at about 3 p.m. November 25.
Lt. Rivero said the death was not considered suspicious and was not being investigated as a homicide. He said he had not seen the autopsy results and did not know the cause of death.
An obituary for Mr. Schmitt appears on Page 15 of this issue.
To contact Diane Valden email
DEC suggests proper attire for winter
ALBANY—Department of Environmental Conservation forest rangers encourage people heading outdoors this time of year to be safe and prepared.
The recommend that people dress properly in thermal undergarments that wick moisture; fleece or wool insulating layers; waterproof or water-resistant outer layers; thick socks, a winter hat, and gloves or mittens; and waterproof, insulated boots.
Also people should carry plenty of food and water to eat and drink, and rest often. Being tired, hungry, or dehydrated makes people more susceptible to hypothermia. For more hiking safety information go to https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/28708.html.
Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC’s Hike Smart NY, Adirondack Backcountry Information and Catskill Backcountry Information webpages for more information.
If a person needs a forest ranger, whether it’s for a search and rescue, to report a wildfire, or to report illegal activity on state lands and easements, they should call 833-NYS-RANGERS. If a person needs urgent assistance, they can call 911. To contact a Forest Ranger for information about a specific location, the DEC website has phone numbers for every Ranger listed by region: https://www.dec.ny.gov/about/667.html