Wife fears for missing Whitby, Ont., teacher Jeffrey Boucher

The wife of a Whitby, Ont., high-school teacher missing since leaving for his morning run early Monday told CBC News she just wants her husband home safely.  

"He's been a good husband, he's a good father," Kristen Boucher told CBC News on the day her husband, Jeffrey Boucher, went missing.  "He cares for everybody, we do a lot of things together."

The 52-year-old father of two, who teaches at Bowmanville High School, left for his regular morning run at 6 a.m. Monday and hasn't been seen since.

Boucher left behind his wallet, and his car is still in the garage.

"Could this be a midlife crisis of some kind, where something bothered him at work, and he just wants to run away? I don't know," his wife said.

Police, who say they do not suspect foul play, are searching wooded areas near the family home on Gilchrist Court, near Brock Street and Taunton Road. 

Police are using a helicopter, all-terrain vehicles and a K-9 unit to carry out the search. Members of the Ontario Volunteer Emergency Response Team (OVERT) joined the search Tuesday and are concentrating their efforts on the Heber Downs Conservation Area in Whitby, which is located about 50 kilometres east of Toronto.

Boucher ran about 10 kilometres most mornings but typically varied his route, using trails that ran through wooded areas near his house. That leaves police with a 10- to 15-kilometre search radius.

"It's ramped up to an intensive search," said Durham Regional Police Insp. David Brown. "It's a hazardous situation with this snow and ice, and we are fearful he may have tripped and fallen and is in a wooded ravine area," he said.

Police do not know exactly what Boucher was wearing when he left for his run, and are concerned he may not be dressed to be out in the cold for hours. Daytime temperatures have been above freezing since Boucher went missing but overnight lows on Tuesday are expected to dip to –​3C.

Boucher is white, six feet tall, weighs 180 pounds, and he has short, grey-and-white hair. Durham police are asking anyone with information about his whereabouts to call 1-888-579-1520.

Police are also asking people in the Whitby area to check their properties.

His daughter Bettina said the family is hopeful that Boucher will return home safe.

"We're doing the best we can, trying to stay positive basically," she told CBC News. She said her father ran every morning for the past 20 years. "It's just weird that yesterday is the day something happens," she said.

Bettina also issued this Tweet on Tuesday: