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Search for missing Kodiak child continues

A child last seen on Saturday morning in Kodiak is still missing, and nearly 1,000 volunteers have joined in the search efforts.
Published: May. 9, 2022 at 4:11 PM AKDT|Updated: May. 9, 2022 at 9:13 PM AKDT
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KODIAK, Alaska (KTUU) - A child last seen on Saturday morning in Kodiak is still missing, and nearly 1,000 volunteers have joined in the search efforts.

According to a trooper dispatch, 7-year-old Sawyer Cipolla was last seen at approximately 11:50 a.m. at 2139 Forest Drive in Kodiak. According to a missing persons bulletin from troopers, Cipolla is wearing an Under Armour brand camouflage hooded sweatshirt and gray pants. Cipolla had only been missing for 30 minutes when he was reported missing.

Cippola is 4 feet, 5 inches tall and weighs approximately 55 pounds. Cipolla is autistic and may not respond to his own name. Instead, Cipolla will likely respond to:

  • “come on in”
  • “brigadier”
  • “marco”
  • vocal howling

A search party of approximately 100 people looked for Cipolla Saturday, and troopers report that the effort has grown to 950 people from nearly a dozen different agencies. Kodiak police, fire, search and rescue, Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Wildlife Troopers, the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy Seals, Alaska Air National Guard Rescue Coordination Center and K9 teams from Anchorage and the Mat-Su joined ground searches and teams on horseback in searching for Cipolla.

In the search for Cipolla, Kodiak Schools Superintendent, Dr. Larry LeDoux says that the whole community has gotten involved.

Staff members at Cipolla’s school have spent nearly all of their free time since the 7-year-old’s disappearance helping in the search efforts. LeDoux said that despite their exhaustion, they are continuing to help each other and try to create normalcy for their students.

“Educators, we believe in miracles everyday,” LeDoux said. “We always believe in great possibilities and see it happen everyday, so to continue to hope and pray that this little boy will be found is easy for us to do, and we’re going to continue to believe that.”

Troopers say that the search for Cipolla will continue as long as resources are available, or until the boy is found.

“As the search continues, volunteers are requested to check in at the Bayside Volunteer Fire Department,” troopers wrote. “Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Sawyer Cipolla is asked to contact the Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak at 907-486-4121.”

Troopers say that 7-year-old Sawyer Cippola went missing at approximately 11:50 a.m. on Saturday.
Troopers say that 7-year-old Sawyer Cippola went missing at approximately 11:50 a.m. on Saturday.(Photo courtesy Alaska State Troopers)

Editor’s note: This article has been updated with additional information.

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