'He is our friend, and he is a family member'; Search for missing Seattle firefighter ongoing

Credit: Kittitas County Sheriff's Office

Local agencies continue to search for missing Seattle Deputy Fire Chief Jay Schreckengost, and hope to find him Saturday.

Schreckengost went hunting in a remote in the remote woods of Cliffdell in Yakima County on Tuesday, Nov. 2, and has not been seen since.

On Saturday, search and rescue officials gave an update on their efforts.

Schreckengost is still missing, but it remains a rescue operation. Based off where he parked on the trail, officials say the search area is a large stretch of the surrounding area.

"It’s in square miles. It’s a big area, and regrettably, a simple statement of area doesn’t communicate, really, what it means out here," said inspector Chris Whitsett with the Kittitas County Sheriff's Office. "Because we’re at 5,000 feet, and the terrain behind us here—cliffs, trees, all of this—this is not atypical, this is representative of what it’s like for the three miles or five miles back in [there] that the searchers are working." 

Schreckengost’s family, as well as off-duty firefighters from Seattle, have joined the efforts to find the deputy chief.

"He’s not only a colleague to us," said Kristin Tinsley with Seattle Fire, "but he is our friend, and he is a family member of the Seattle Fire Department."

Schreckengost has been missing since Tuesday and the goal remains to find him as soon as possible. 

"It’s extremely concerning," said inspector Chris Whitsett with KCSO. "When we have this kind of operation, we have to have a headcount."

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