Student Disappeared on Stargazing Trip

A San Diego woman went stargazing Sunday with a few friends near a North Dakota college and hasn’t been seen since.

Kyrstin Gemar, 22, attends Dickinson State and plays softball for the school’s team.  Gemar left Dickinson to go stargazing Sunday night with teammates Ashley Neufeld and Afton Williamson in a Jeep Cherokee. According to one friend, the women often traveled all over the area to look at stars.

The group called a friend at 11:18 p.m. to ask for help, Dickinson police said. The call was very scratchy and mentioned that the women were near a lake and water. The call lasted for approximately 40 seconds.

One minute later another call was made that lasted approximately 30 seconds and at that time both phones went dead and have not been in service since that time, police said.

That call pinged off a radar base road cell phone tower northeast of Dickinson which could put the women anywhere up to 30 miles away, Stark County Sheriff Clarence Tuhy told the local newspaper in Dickinson.

"The Dickinson Police Department is pursuing all avenues at this time foul play is not suspected but is not being ruled out," said Lt. Rod Banyai in a news release.

Kyrstin Gemar's family lives in Clairemont and her father Lenny Gemar said softball was Kyrstin's life. She was committed to her team and her father can't think of what might have happened.

For now, deputies are asking that volunteer search parties not get involved but Gemar's father said hundreds of volunteers are helping look for Kyrstin and her friends.

Deputies said they’ve checked Patterson Lake and other bodies of water around Dickinson, but divers have not been utilized.

The North Dakota Highway Patrol has been grid searching numerous areas by Air Plane and vehicles.

The Stark County Sheriff's Department along with Dunn, Billings and Hettinger County has also been involved in the search.

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