Where Is Merlin Turner? Desperate Family Searches for Retired Fire Chief Suffering PTSD

The missing fire chief was last seen Saturday night.
Merlin Turner was last seen Saturday night.Eldorado County Sheriff's Office

Merlin Turner, 62 was last seen Saturday night when he had dinner with a friend.

Desperate family members are searching for a retired fire chief who vanished in Northern California after having dinner with a friend. Merlin Turner, 62, had been struggling with PTSD issues during the coronavirus lock down, said his best friend, John Havenhill.

“He came by about 7 and we visited, had dinner till about 8:45. We talked about some calls that were bugging him, this COVID situation,” Havenhill told FOX40. “Being cooped up in the house was getting to him. He needed to get out and work out and have some type of release. And since that wasn’t occurring, he was having issues."

Turner hasn't been seen since. His family reported him missing on Monday.

The Eldorado County Sheriff's Office said Turner was driving a 2005 Dodge Ram with California license plate 7U74029. Anyone with information is asked to call the department at 530-621-5655.

Havenhill said his friend was struggling with emotional memories from his career as a firefighter.

“There was an incident years ago where he pulled two firefighters from Contra Costa County out of a building and (they) perished,” he told the station. “He didn’t know that when he went in and it’s haunted him ever since. And it’s one of the many calls that him and I talk about together. So, he just needed somebody to talk to, you know, who understood the situation.”

His daughter reported him missing after learning no had spoken to her father since Saturday night. The two usually talk several times a day, she said. His cellphone now goes directly to voice mail, she said.

“I love you and I want to see you. Come home,” daughter Chaz Green told the station.