Search continues for 3-year-old boy last seen in Eagle
The search for 3-year-old Sebastian Castro will be called off at sunset Saturday and will resume at 7 a.m. Sunday.
The boy was reported missing from Eagle Villas apartments on June 5 at about 9:20 p.m. He has brown hair and eyes, and was wearing red shoes with ripped blue jeans. He has autism, is non-verbal and is not comfortable with adults he does not know. The family is asking that anyone who is helping look for the boy not yell his name. He responds well to kid’s songs and animal noises, loves colorful things, water and insects. He is a heavy sleeper and likes to sleep in tight small spaces.
A young boy with a similar description was reported to be in the playground at the Eagle Villas, located at 405 Nogal Road in Eagle, around 9 p.m. on Friday, June 5.
Foul play is not suspected at this time.
Public safety officials have asked the public not to look for Sebastian after dark as dangerous conditions exist, especially in the Eagle River area. The Eagle River reached its likely peak for the season on Tuesday.
On Saturday, Vail Mountain Rescue used boats to float the river, and drones were deployed to search the area safely.
Search and rescue crews said a number of families joined in searching along the river on Saturday, which is not recommended.
“With our current high water levels, it is extremely dangerous along the river banks, and we would prefer that you leave these search areas to Vail Mountain Rescue and other professionals,” Tracy LeClair with the Eagle County Sheriff’s Department wrote in a press release issued Saturday.
More than 300 civilian volunteers volunteered to aid in the search, making volunteer coordination an important part of the effort. To help organize the volunteer effort Sunday, rescue teams have set up a process that will allow people to sign up to search in shifts. Shifts will run from 7 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 2:30-9 p.m.
Volunteers can register at forms.gle/CGwBTirBFDedBEHD8.
“Once the shifts are full, we unfortunately cannot accept any more volunteers, so please do not show up without first signing up,” LeClair said in the release. “We appreciate the continued overwhelming support in response to the ongoing search for Sebastian Castro. We are immensely grateful for the outpouring of support we have seen both from the community and from our assisting agencies during this difficult time.”
Volunteers are being advised that Eagle County is still in the blue phase of the COVID-19 recovery process, and they will be asked to wear a face covering when near other people.
“Please also bring your own hand sanitizer and use it frequently,” LeClair wrote in the release. “Please continue to practice social distancing and if you feel ill, please stay home.”
Volunteers must be a minimum of 21 years old and are recommend to come prepared with sturdy hiking shoes, sunscreen and rain gear.
“Volunteers should expect to be hiking over rough terrain for the duration of their shift,” LeClair said in the release.