DENTON COUNTY (CBS11) – After a full day of searching, there was still no sign Tuesday evening of missing boater, Matthew Meinert, who disappeared in Denton Creek Monday.
His 2-year-old son, Oliver was found safe Tuesday morning.
Drone technology is helping with the search.
“What this is doing is knocking a lot of time off. We’re searching a lot of area really quick. Areas you can’t get boats or K9’s into,” said Officer Barry Moore, a drone pilot for the Mansfield Police Department.
Moore’s part of a response team made up of several agencies with drones. It consists of local fire and police agencies across the Metroplex.
“We’re able to zoom in tighter to the ground and that helps a lot,” added Officer Moore.
Meinert’s boat ran aground Monday night, with a cell phone, food, and shoes inside – but no trace of passengers – until Tuesday morning.
Oliver walked up to searchers. Police don’t know how he survived.
“There were quite a few hours that he was out here by himself weathering these conditions,” said Lt. Tracey Shields with the Trophy Club Police Department.
Oliver’s scratched up, but otherwise, okay, police said.
“He told them he was cold and thirsty. He wanted juice. That was the extent of their conversation,” shared Lt. Shields.
The Meinert family said Matthew is an avid boater. His wife shared a picture of father and son – taken Monday – before they set out on a fishing trip.
“No one expected to find a 2-year-old this morning. So we’re going to continue this as a search and rescue until something else happens,” said Lt. Shields.
Harvin Jones, a father of two, was dirt-bike riding Tuesday evening in the same area. He said he thought about Meinert while out riding and what his kids would do if anything ever happened to him outdoors.
“You could hear the coyotes. They were yapping and hollering. So I’m sure for that little guy it was pretty scary,” said Jones. “It’s important when you got your little guys with you stay safe.”
His 11-year-old son Kelley said he, like police, cannot understand how 2-year-old Oliver survived the cold night in the wild.
“Even at my age it’s scary. I couldn’t imagine a kid 2-years-old out there,” said Kelly Jones.
The family of Matthew Meinert said they need all the prayers they can get from the community.
Lt. Shields said fresh search teams are tentatively scheduled to be deployed Wednesday at 9:00 a.m.