A man matching the description of Robert “Bob” Lowery, the visitor from Houston, Texas, last seen over a month ago on the Black Canyon Trail near Teton Pass, was found dead Tuesday by Teton County Search and Rescue volunteers.
A team with a search dog located the body on a steep, timbered slope after four hours of searching on foot, a Teton County Search and Rescue press release said.
Twenty-five people split into seven teams along with three search dog teams — one from Victor, one from Jackson and one from Grand Teton National Park — combed the Black Canyon area Tuesday, according to Matt Hansen of the Teton County Search and Rescue Foundation.
“At about 1 p.m., a dog team located a body and black Nike duffle bag significantly off trail on a steep, wooded slope,” the press release said. “Volunteers spent Tuesday afternoon recovering the body from the mountainside. Collectively, the search teams hiked more than 75 miles and covered 22,500 feet in elevation.”
On Monday, Teton County Sheriff Matt Carr directed Search and Rescue volunteers to begin looking for Lowery at the point where he was last seen, and they started searching the next day. Until then, the Sheriff’s Office had been investigating Lowery’s disappearance but had not deployed a search team, partially because there hadn’t been a solid tip on Lowery’s whereabouts.
That changed when national media attention on missing vanlifer Gabby Petito’s case led two part-time Teton County residents to a story, first reported in the News&Guide, regarding three people who went missing in Teton County this year, one of whom was Lowery, according to his sister, Leigh Lowery.
Those hikers then recalled seeing Lowery, a father of two children who were not with him when he came to Jackson, on Aug. 20 around 3 p.m. on the Black Canyon Trail sitting by a rock and reported that sighting to the Teton County Sheriff’s Office. The hikers, who noted Lowery’s black Nike duffel bag, said he was alone.
He didn’t seem to be in any distress or needing any assistance, according to the witnesses who spoke with staff at the sheriff’s office. But the sighting was over a month ago, and Lowery hadn’t been seen since, until he was found Tuesday.
Before he was found, his sister, Leigh Lowery, said the national concentration on Petito drew attention to Lowery, who was mentioned along with Petito in several news stories from the News&Guide to the New York Post and The Sun.
“The good news about it has been Bob got pulled into a bunch of articles, so it actually drew a bunch of attention from people that I know,” she said.
The last known footage of Lowery, taken from a hotel camera, showed him getting into a Lyft car with a black Nike duffel bag, which his sister, Leigh Lowery, said contained a grey, single-person Magellan Kings Peak Tent and a blue sleeping bag. That car took Lowery to Pearl Street Bagels in Wilson, off Highway 22 that leads up Teton Pass, where the Black Canyon Trail begins.
“He was just a sweet, sweet kid,” his sister said.
A couple of hours after the Search and Rescue press release, Lowery’s family issued a statement, stating, in part: “At this time, we especially want to thank Teton County Sheriff’s Deputy Chad Sachse and his department for all of their work during this month that Bob has been missing. We also appreciate the search today by Teton County Search and Rescue volunteer teams and the care and concern demonstrated by so many in the Jackson Hole news media and community.
“Bob has been a wonderful father, son, brother and friend. Our family wants to thank the news media and others involved in the search for our privacy at this difficult time.”
The Lowery family has started a GoFundMe for his children's education and future necessities. You can donate at the link here.
“Our family wants to thank the news media and others involved in the search for our privacy at this difficult time.” — Family of Robert Lowery