top of page

OSRT Search and Rescue Captain Plays Vital Role in Locating Two Missing Toddlers

Cletus Payne, Captain of Ohio Special Response Search Unit 2, recently deployed as a Troy Township Fire Fighter to Truman Village Mobile home park in Luckey, Ohio, for two missing children - a six year old and a four year old.

Temperatures were dropping, with rain changing over to snow. Speed to locate these kids was critical.

Upon arrival, Payne was assigned to liaise with the IC Troy Fire, Wood County Sheriff's Dept. patrol officers, and a group of volunteers as the OSRT rep while assisting with initial actions and Incident Commander support.

As with nearly every missing persons incident, especially when children are involved, the first half hour on scene was chaotic, as panicked parents and bystanders began interacting with law enforcement and fire department representatives. Dozens of voices put forth dozens of often conflicting theories regarding where the children might be located and what steps needed to be taken. It's during this initial time period that formal search and rescue training pays off.

Captain Payne organized the search using Lost Person Behavioral Analysis “bike wheel” technique. This analytic framework utilizes a database of more than 50,000 lost person incidents to empower search specialists to more accurately identify and prioritize critical target areas in which to conduct the search.

As a direct result of Cletus' use of this analysis, both children were successfully located within 45 minutes of the search initiation. Lost Person Behavioral Analysis WORKS!

Agencies on the scene: Wood County Sheriffs Dept, Troy Township Fire and EMS, Luckey PD, Ohio Special Response Team, bus drivers from Eastwood High School, and Local volunteers.

Cletus Payne is the captain of Ohio Special Response, Unit 2, located in Wyandot County, Ohio. Cletus is qualified as a SARTech II Search Technician as well as ASTM 2209, Wilderness Search Technician – both advanced nationally rated credentials.

Interested in becoming part of the solution to locating missing individuals in and around Ohio? Tired of sitting around, staring at the television? This is your opportunity to step up and volunteer to serve a worthy cause. Ohio Special Response would like to speak with you. Check in with us at:

Sometimes a walk in the woods is more than just a walk in the woods!


bottom of page