Peter Beard, the 82-year-old artist and photographer, went missing from his home in Montauk on March 31.
Mr. Beard, who suffers from dementia, wandered away from his house near Deep Hollow Ranch at 4:40 PM and after trying without success to find him, reported him missing at 6:30.
Chief Michael Sarlo said on Tuesday,
“It was an extensive and exhaustive search. The quick response by Suffolk Police Aviation and the state trooper K-9 units gave us the best chance of locating him immediately after being reported missing.”
Of course we are disappointed in the results, and it is always so difficult for the family when we cannot close a case quickly. We will continue to pursue all investigatory angles in this case.”
Two detectives were out on the bluffs but found nothing.
Three days after he went missing, Mr. Beard’s daughter, Zara Beard, posted on her Instagram page that she was thankful for the efforts of law enforcement agencies.
“I know this is the most difficult time, amidst a pandemic, to ask for your help. It is a time when we need to stay at home for the good of everyone around us, but my father is out there somewhere, missing.”
She thanked anyone able to continue the search for her father while respecting the social distancing protocols. Anyone with information please call detectives at 631-537-7575.
Beard made his name in the 70s with The End of the Game, a picture chronicle of the carnage in Kenya’s Tsavo National Park when tens of thousands of elephants died due to conservation mismanagement. He had first become enchanted with Africa as a teenager in 1955.
Longtime friend Graham Boynton wrote in AirMail today;
“The last time I saw him was 18 months ago. We had a day out in Montauk, wandering around in the soft autumn sunshine. He had most certainly been diminished by several strokes in recent years and perhaps was showing the early signs of dementia, so much so that my notes carry this deadly phrase:
‘He appeared to be in no condition to discuss big issues.’
I left with a heavy heart, then looked back to wave good-bye and caught a flash of that wild gleam in his eye.
(Photos, Avalon; via East Hampton Star)