Skier lost in New York doesn’t know howhe got to Cal­i­for­nia

The Oneida Daily Dispatch (Oneida, NY) - - Nation + World -

WILMINGTON, N.Y. » Po­lice on Wed­nes­day were try­ing to piece to­gether how a 49-year- old skier whose dis­ap­pear­ance sparked a mas­sive search on a snowy New York moun­tain­side ended up six days later in Cal­i­for­nia, con­fused and still in ski clothes.

Toronto fire­fighter Con­stanti­nos “Danny” Filip­pidis told in­ves­ti­ga­tors he doesn’t know what hap­pened af­ter he was re­ported miss­ing Wed­nes­day, Feb. 7, from White­face Moun­tain dur­ing an an­nual ski trip with col­leagues. The search ended Tues­day when Filip­pidis turned up in Sacra­mento, Cal­i­for­nia, some 2,500 miles (4,000 kilo­me­ters) west of the Adiron­dacks.

“At this point, we want to as­sist Danny in get­ting back the last six days of his life,” said New York State Po­lice Maj. John Tib­bitts.

Filip­pidis was head­ing back to the Lake Placid, New York, area on Wed­nes­day. Tib­bitts said the fire­fighter had agreed to be in­ter­viewed by state po­lice but that he’s not aware that Filip­pidis broke any laws.

Frank Ra­m­ag­nano, pres­i­dent of the Toronto Pro­fes­sional Fire­fight­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion, told re­porters at a news con­fer­ence Tues­day evening that Filip­pidis ap­peared to be “con­fused and was un­able to give di­rect an­swers.”

“He had phoned ( his wife) and called her by a nick­name. She quickly rec­og­nized the voice and that it was him,” Ra­m­ag­nano said. “Then they lost con- tact and he con­tacted her again and they kept him on the phone and asked him to call 911 to get him help as soon as pos­si­ble.”

Filip­pidis told deputies he re­mem­bered lit­tle, but thought he’d suf­fered a head in­jury, rode in a “big rig-style truck” and slept “a lot,” Sgt. Shaun Hamp­ton of the Sacra­mento County Sher­iff’s Depart­ment told the Post-Stan­dard of Syra­cuse.

Filip­pidis said he bought an iPhone to call his wife and told deputies that a truck dropped him off in down­town Sacra­mento, where he got a hair­cut, Hamp­ton said.

Tib­bitts said it was too early in the miss­ing per­son in­ves­ti­ga­tion to com­ment on de­tails pro­vided from oth­ers. He also de­clined to es­ti­mate the cost of the six- day search, which in­volved a he­li­copter and up to 140 peo­ple a day, some comb­ing the snow with hands.

Po­lice dis­trib­uted a pic- ture of Filip­pidis taken in Cal­i­for­nia on Tues­day, hop­ing peo­ple who rec­og­nize him can help solve the mys­tery. In this photo pro­vided by the Sacra­mento County Sher­iff’s Depart­ment in Sacra­mento via the New York State Po­lice, Con­stanti­nos (Danny) Filip­pidis is shown. Filip­pidis, who went miss­ing while ski­ing in Lake Placid, N.Y., on was found at a Cal­i­for­nia air­port six days later. The 49-year-old cap­tain with Toronto Fire Ser­vices told po­lice he did not re­call the cir­cum­stances of his de­par­ture from New York, but rec­ol­lected trav­el­ing to Sacra­mento in a big rig truck.

“He wants to find out where he was as badly as we want to find out where he was,” Tib­bitts said.


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