Rescue team searches for lost woman

Douglas Island attorney, mother reported missing late Sunday night

Posted: Tuesday, January 18, 2005

The search for a Douglas woman who went missing Sunday night continues today near the end of North Douglas Highway, according to the Alaska State Troopers.

Rebecca Mass, 46, an attorney living on Douglas Island, was reported missing Sunday after 10 p.m., hours after she was expected to pick up her 10-year-old son from a friend's house, said Trooper Mark Granda.

Mass's car was found at the end of North Douglas Highway at about 11:22 p.m. Sunday night, prompting troopers to initiate a search of the area.

Granda said the vehicle was parked at the end of the road and did not appear to be stuck in the snow.

"There was nothing to suggest foul play," Granda said.

The initial search ran from Sunday night until about 2:30 p.m. Monday and included the trail at the end of North Douglas Highway and areas along the road and woods, he said. The search was set to continue today at 9 a.m.

The search team includes the troopers, Southeast Alaska Dogs Organized for Ground Search, also known as SEADOGS, Juneau Mountain Rescue and friends of Mass. The trooper said about 15 people searched the north Douglas area Monday.

Granda would not speculate on how Mass disappeared. He said the area held special significance for Mass, who was almost married there a few years ago.

Friends disclosed to the troopers that Mass had suffered depression leading up to her disappearance but seemed in good spirits on Sunday, he said.

"We continue to search and we do think about the odds of survivability during a search, and right now the search has been on since (Sunday) night and we're going to continue to be hopeful that she is OK," Granda said.

Mass has been active in recent years with her son in local running organizations, such as the Southeast Road Runners Club.

Stacey Kraly, an assistant attorney general for the state, said she does not know Mass well but that she did guardian ad litem work, arguing on the behalf of children in divorce cases and child-in-need-of-aid cases.

"She was always out and about and always had her son with her," Kraly said.

• Timothy Inklebarger can be reached at timothy.inklebarger@juneauempire.com.



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