A Wyoming woman originally from Lynnfield has gone missing in Nicaragua.
Karen Colclough, 37, of Wilson, Wyoming, was with a Christian mission group in Nicaragua when she disappeared on April 11. The six-person mission, organized by the Presbyterian Church of Jackson Hole and Agros International of Seattle, had finished its work and was at the Barcelo Montelimar resort, resting before heading home, according to her brother, Michael Colclough.
Family friend Victoria Howland told Boston.com that Colclough went for a walk late that morning carrying only a camera, notebook, and bible. A farmer told investigators he saw Colclough walking in a cane field a couple of hours after she left the resort, Howland said.
“Karen is incredibly responsible. She’s a kind, sweet person. She would not have taken off like this and worry everyone,” said Howland.
In a statement sent to Colclough’s brother Michael, Agros President Dan Manning said local authorities were notified Friday evening. Karen’s absence wasn’t noted until dinner time, according to Manning.
“We have continued to mobilize resources to expand the search. Today, local authorities continued searching on foot and on horseback. A K9 unit was also secured and searched,” wrote Manning on Sunday. A Red Cross dive team is searching the ocean near the resort, according to Manning’s statement.
Manning said security personnel at Barcelo and another resort reported seeing Karen in the hours after she left.
“The search efforts have concentrated in the areas where she was last seen,” wrote Manning. “In addition, we have distributed photos of Karen in the neighboring area as well as at hospitals asking if she has been seen.”
Michael Colclough said Karen was not in a part of Nicaragua that’s considered especially dangerous. He said Agros and the church have taken the lead in contacting authorities and in trying to find her.
“They’ve been keeping me and my family updated,” he said.
Agros spokesman Nick Wildeman said the organization has been in touch with the Nicaraguan National Police, who are involved in the search. They have also reached out to security teams at Worldvision and the Gates Foundation, along with the US Embassy in Mangua.
According to Wildeman, Agros has never had a previous missing person or other security matter in its 30 years history. The company will provide updates on the search through its Facebook page.
The resort is located on Nicaragua’s west coast, 38 miles southwest of the capital city of Managua.
Friends have set up a Find Karen Colclough Facebook page to spread the world of her disappearance.
Colclough moved to Wyoming after attending graduate school there, according to her brother. Her parents still live in Lynnfield.