Missing Duluth Man’s Body Found in Pine Lake

Canoe Found on Pine Lake

At approximately 5 p.m. on the evening of November 9, search efforts for Michael Hickey, 59, of Duluth man, concluded when a body was recovered in Pine Lake.

“This is a difficult day for all involved; an extensive multi-agency search ended with a discovery of a body in the lake,” said Sheriff Pat Eliasen. “We always hope for the best, that we’ll locate a missing person alive. Given the expansive remote search area, which is difficult to access, I commend the efforts of all of the responders involved for their unwavering dedication to this search.”

The body was located in approximately 80 feet of water using side scan sonar technology provided by the St. Louis County Search and Rescue.

A post-mortem investigation to determine the cause of death will follow.

UPDATE 11/9:

Search efforts for Michael Hickey of Duluth, went late into the evening on Tuesday and produced additional items belonging to the missing man.

Responders located a depth finder fish locator and fishing gear along with a back pack off the shoreline where Hickey is believed to have camped.

An extensive ground water and air search was conducted.

Teams mobilized early Wednesday morning at 7 a.m. and will focus on two identified areas. Side scan sonar and Remote Operated Vehicles are being used to complete a grid search of an area approximately 1,000 feet off shore near the location where the additional items were located.

A canine and cadaver search team are being requested at this time.

The investigation continues to be ongoing; more information will be released as it becomes available.

UPDATE 11/8:

Search efforts for a missing 59-year-old Duluth man, resumed at daybreak this morning on Pine Lake.

Michael Raymond Hickey was reported missing Monday afternoon, after failing to attend work, and attempts to contact him were unsuccessful.

He was expected to return home from a weekend fishing trip at the lake he frequented, Sunday evening.

Cook County Sheriff’s Deputies and Search & Rescue located a partially submerged canoe and paddles registered to the man, Monday evening.

Darkness halted the search Monday evening.

The man’s truck was also located at the McFarland Lake boat landing, west of Pine Lake.

Pine Lake is located off of the Arrowhead Trail in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, north of Hovland, MN.

The lake consists of 18.22 miles of shoreline, has a maximum depth of 113 feet, and covers 2,122 acres.

“We are conducting an extensive search and doing everything we can to locate Mr. Hickey, including a ground, water and air search with resources from the Sheriff’s Office, Search & Rescue, the United States Forest Service, United States Border Patrol, Minnesota State Patrol and Minnesota Department of Natural Resources,” said Sheriff Pat Eliasen. “We are working with Mr. Hickey’s son, who is currently at the scene.”

This is an ongoing investigation; more information will be released as it becomes available.

ORIGINAL STORY:

A report of a possible missing person initiated an investigation for a 59-year-old Duluth man on Pine Lake.

Pine Lake is located off the Arrowhead Trail in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, north of Hovland, MN.

The Cook County Sheriff’s Office got the report around 3 p.m. on Monday, November 7.

Sheriff’s Office Deputies and Cook County Search & Rescue located a partially submerged canoe registered to the missing man, as well as paddles and personal affects believed to be those of the man.

“The search victim is a long-time user of the area who has been fishing Pine Lake for many years,” said Sheriff Pat Eliasen. “Colleagues reported him missing when he failed to attend work Monday and attempts to contact him were unsuccessful. He left for Pine Lake on Friday, November 4 and was supposed to return Sunday.”

Pine Lake is located East of McFarland Lake in the BWCA.

The missing man’s truck was located at the McFarland boat landing.

“Darkness hampered the search into Monday evening, but resumed at daybreak today,” Sheriff Eliasen said. “This is an ongoing investigation; more information will be released when it is available.”

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