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Missing Richard Harvell
Harvell, circa 2015
Missing Since 10/15/2015
Kern County, California
Classification Lost/Injured Missing
Date of Birth Used 03/31/1948 (72)
Age 67 years old
Height and Weight 5'11, 185 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male. Brown hair, brown eyes.
Details of Disappearance Harvell was last seen in Kern County, California on October 15, 2015. He lived in Boron, California and was camping with a friend in the Mojave Desert at the foot of the Tehachapi Mountains at the time of his disappearance.
He and his friend were eating inside their camping trailer near 150th Street and Highgate Avenue when a thunderstorm began late in the evening. The storm caused a flash flood that swept water, mud, sand and other debris down the mountainside, damaging hundreds of homes and trapping more than 100 vehicles four to six feet deep.
Harvell went outside in knee-deep water to try and move his truck to safety, when a boulder hit him and he was knocked down and swept away. The truck was carried only a short distance by the flood, but Harvell vanished.
Harvell, a Vietnam War veteran, was the youngest of fifteen siblings in his family, and fathered six of his own children. He worked at building fences and other construction projects and spent several days at a week at his mobile home; his family stated he preferred mountains and wilderness areas.
At least one other individual died in the flood. This victim was recovered, but Harvell's has never been found in spite of an extensive search.
Investigating Agency / Department