Sunflower Fire raises hope of finding hiker missing since 2010

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by Crystal Cruz

azfamily.com

Posted on May 28, 2012 at 9:17 PM

Updated Tuesday, May 29 at 10:40 AM

PAYSON, Ariz. -- As the Sunflower Fire, near Payson, cools down, the search for a missing hiker picks up.

Friends call him "GPS Joe."

By the looks of the photo on his website www.gpsjoe.net, you can see why that name fits Joseph Domin, 68.

There are hundreds of photos and some show him wearing his hiking hat and using walking sticks posing on different mountains.

“We hadn't seen him in a few days. Normally he would come in and out and what not,” said neighbor Jilian Porter.

It's been more than two years since Porter last saw her neighbor.

In November of 2010 Domin's went hiking by himself, in the same spot where the Sunflower Fire is burning.

“He was supposed to be going on a hiking trip with a group that he normally went with. One of the members wasn't able to go because he was having surgery.  The rest of the members didn't go and Joe decided to go on his own,” said Porter.

When a neighbor stopped by Domin’s home two years ago she noticed something wasn't right.

“His car was gone and his packages were still out,” said Porter.

Recently a close friend asked firefighters to look again for Domin.

There's now a ray of hope, in the ashes of the Sunflower wildfire.

“Hopefully they can find him and bring some closure to his family and to at least know what happened to him,” said Porter.

The neighbor said Domin’s son visits from the east coast to care for his father's empty condo.

 

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