KINGSVILLE, Texas — A missing Kingsville man has been found safe.
Corpus Christi Police Department officials confirmed that he was found Sunday night at about 9:31 p.m. in the area of Leopard Street and Violet Drive.
According to Senior Officer Gena Pena, Ploug was observed to be in good physical condition and removed from the system as a missing person.
The Kingsville native had been missing since early October. According to family members, Ploug left his home in Floresville Oct. 15 on his bike, and they believe he was attempting to return to Kingsville where he lived for around 60 years.
Ploug is mentally challenged and lived with his cousin, Don Wehmann. Wehmann said Ploug typically never leaves the house if he or his wife is not there, so when they returned home Tuesday and he was not there, they got worried.
"He usually just stays home and watches television,” Wehmann said. “At first we looked on the property here, and we saw no sign of him, no tracks or anything”
Wehmann said Ploug didn't have his cell phone, or medical identification bracelet on him, but believed he should have his state-issued ID.
In Kingsville, Ploug was a lifelong member of the Lions Club. His friends in the Lions Club have been looking for him across the area he may have traveled.
“We drove the back roads up towards Mathis, trying to meet in the middle. It’s hard to figure out what might be in John’s mind, he might be getting a little bit frantic at this point. You can just imagine being on your own,” said Dave Christopher.
“We had gone by his house already, where he lived here in Kingsville, and he was not there either,” said Lucy Camarillo. “He may have wandered off in the wrong direction. He does not know how to read, and for that reason he’s only looking for landmarks.”
When we first reported Ploug missing, there was a report that he may have been seen at a convenience store in George West, but that report was unconfirmed, and he had not not been heard from since.
Ploug’s friends were fearful for his safety, and hoped someone helped him and gave him shelter.
“We’re just hopeful, after eight nights on the road, that he’s met a kind person, and just clammed up and isn’t telling them what his actual situation is,” Christopher said. “At this point, I think somebody’s probably had to have helped him. Good Lord willing that’s what the situation is.”
Camarillo asked for the public’s help locating Ploug.
“We’re running out of solutions, out of ideas of where to go looking for him. So, anyone who can help us, we’d be greatly appreciative,” she said.
The Wilson County Sheriff’s Office issued a missing person report for Ploug on Oct. 12.