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Missing Vietnam vet found in Las Vegas

Posted at 3:36 PM, Nov 23, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-28 16:17:06-05

UPDATE: Eliasib Cantu's family tells 10News he has been found at a VA hospital in Las Vegas. Family members are on their way to reunite with him. They are not sure at this point how he ended up there.

SAN DIEGO — A family is desperately looking for their 68-year-old father Eliasib Cantu, a Vietnam veteran who is diagnosed with schizophrenia, who went missing from his San Ysidro home on Friday.

He walked away without his medications.

“We get our hopes up every day,” said his daughter Aime Cantu.  “In the morning we get out hopes up thinking this will be the day that we’re going to find him.”

Aime and her family have handed out hundreds of flyers with Eliasib’s picture.

Several witnesses told the family they saw the vet in downtown San Diego and the East Village. 10News received word from Metropolitan Transit System that he was spotted on security video getting off the trolley Tuesday in the East Village.

The Cantu family received a lot of impromptu help from two retired San Diego County sheriff’s deputies.

“I was sitting at home and I saw it on Facebook and I said, ‘You know what? I’m going to go out and help this man,’” said retired deputy Roger Demshok.

Demshok and Rick Harrison, also a retired deputy, provided a lot of investigative experience and guided the family to hot spots around San Diego.

Cantu said her dad was nice but not very social.  He keeps to himself, she said.

Cantu said she and her family plan to skip Thanksgiving dinner and continue the search for her father on Thursday. 

Eliasib is Hispanic, 5 feet 7 and 140 pounds with short graying black hair, brown eyes and a full beard with a mustache. His family says they last saw him wearing a maroon polo shirt with beige stripes, black pants and black shoes.

In November 23 surveillance footage from the trolley station at 12th and Imperial, Eliasib is seen wearing a light-colored long sleeve shirt and pants. 

Anyone with information on his whereabouts was asked to call San Diego police (619) 531-2000 or (619) 840-3843.