Family seeking missing San Mateo man in Nebraska

Courtesy PhotoCharles Dowd was last seen on an Amtrak train stopped in Omaha

Five days after Charles Dowd, a 69-year-old San Mateo man, went missing from an Amtrak train headed from the Bay Area to Chicago, family members continue to be hopeful that he will be found safe.

Dowd’s wife, Patricia, said today that their two children, Jennifer and Kevin, are in Omaha, Neb., to hand out fliers and organize a search party near where their father was last seen Thursday by an Amtrak train conductor.

“They’re trying to rally a really big search party in Omaha today,” Patricia Dowd said.

The conductor who last saw Charles Dowd said he appeared disoriented and confused about his whereabouts, thinking he was in an apartment rather than on a train and that he needed to find the front door, Patricia Dowd said.

The former San Francisco firefighter takes medication that can sometimes leave him temporarily disoriented, she said.

Her husband possibly got off the train at the station in Omaha to smoke a cigarette, but it wasn’t clear if he ever got back on, she said.

When the train arrived in Chicago on Friday, the man’s cellphone, luggage and medication were still on the train, but he was nowhere to be found.

The family has been working with Amtrak officials and contacting hospitals and police departments along the train route to assist in the search.

The couple’s two children will likely head to Lincoln, Neb. — the next train stop on the way to Chicago — to search that area today.

Patricia Dowd said her family is worried and frustrated about the lack of results that the search has generated so far.

“I don’t know what kind of state I’m in,” she said.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts should call 911 and immediately relay the information to local law enforcement.

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