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Autopsy: hunter's gunshot wound was self-inflicted

December 5, 2011
MIKE LYNCH, Outdoors Writer , Lake Placid News

LAKE PLACID - An autopsy performed Thursday on a Lake Placid man who went missing over the weekend determined that he died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to state police.

The manner of death was ruled suicide by Essex County Coroner Robert Huestis.

Russ Beede, 63, disappeared on Saturday and was the subject of a large-scale search in the vicinity of Mount Jo in the town of North Elba, where his truck was found off Adirondack Loj Road.

State Department of Environmental Conservation forest rangers led the three-day search until Beede was discovered by a search party at about 2:15 p.m. Wednesday. His body was about a half-mile from his truck in an off-trail, wooded area.

Beede was last seen on Saturday morning and had indicated he was going hunting on lands off the Adirondack Loj Road, according to state police.

Beede was a former North Elba Highway Department worker.

Dozens of volunteers from the New York State Search and Rescue Federation, Search and Rescue of the Northern Adirondacks, Central Adirondacks Search and Rescue, Lower Adirondacks Search and Rescue, Team 5-1 Search and Rescue, Lake Placid Volunteer Fire Department and Wilmington Volunteer Fire Department took part in the search.

State police special operations response members, a state police helicopter and a special state police K-9 unit were also part of the search.

The autopsy was performed by Dr. C. Francis Varga.



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