Stearns County to step up search for Joshua

A second meeting with the Stearns County Board of Commissioners on April 15 may have achieved additional help in the search for Joshua Guimond.

Two weeks ago, the family of Joshua, a St. John’s college student missing since November 9, asked the Stearns County Board to bring in the Trident Foundation aquatic investigative team from Colorado to search three lakes on the St. John’s campus.

According to Brian Guimond, Joshua’s father, the board left the decision to bring in the Trident team to Sheriff John Sanner. And a meeting with Sanner produced some positive results.

“Before we left there, Sanner said he was going to call in the Trident,” Brian said, noting that the sheriff also told the county board that divers would be sent in to Sagatagan Lake, where Guimond family members and friends had focused search efforts over the winter.

The Trident Foundation services will be provided at no cost to the county.

The family also requested that Stearns County organize another ground search before sprouting leaves made a search more difficult.

Brian’s father, Bob, read a letter written by Joshua’s mother, Lisa Cheney:  “The family, friends, community members, and concerned citizens are here to request another search of the college campus and property. In other cases of missing people, they have been found in areas that have been thoroughly searched a year later. St. John’s campus is 2,500 acres. We realize what this would entail and will help with finding volunteers to do this. We feel that is what needs to be done before the trees and brush start to bud out. Stearns County can help by bringing in the mounted patrol and the National Guard to search the areas that are so thick.

“We understand that these things have been done already, but feel that they need to be done again. All we are trying to do is clear the campus so the Sheriff’s department can move on to other avenues in their investigation.

“If this was any one of your children, do you think enough was being done?

“We would like you to try and help us in this matter. We don’t know if you can, but we need to ask.”

Last week Brian said he and co-worker Garth Wilson kayaked around the shorelines of both Gemini and Stumpf lakes without finding a trace of Joshua. He said he also had plans to do a helicopter search of the St. John’s campus on April 21, in addition to a mounted patrol search expected to be undertaken yet this week.  

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