Hope fades in search for hiker

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Hope is fading for a successful end to the search for a 29-year-old camper in the Green Mountain National Forest.

Vermont State Police Lieutenant William O’Leary says “It’s pretty much a recovery operation now.”

Police have suspended the search and will resume it in the morning.

Edgar Gonzalez has been missing since Saturday night, when he vanished while hiking with some friends near Stratton. The hikers were walking on trails when they stopped at an old campsite. When they started off again, Gonzalez got separated.

O’Leary says at about 10 p.m., after looking for him near Grout Pond, members of his group and other campers not associated with them heard several shouts for help and splashing water coming from the direction of the center of the pond. But Gonzalez still couldn’t be found.

On Sunday, a kayaker found shoes believed to belong to Gonzalez floating in the pond.

Alerted by authorities, Gonzalez’s parents flew to Vermont from Florida to watch the search operation.

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