Missing Saint John teen found safe, police say

·1 min read
Gerald Surnode's church dedicated Wednesday afternoon's mass to him before he was found.  (Roger Cosman/CBC - image credit)
Gerald Surnode's church dedicated Wednesday afternoon's mass to him before he was found. (Roger Cosman/CBC - image credit)

A Saint John teenager who has been missing since Monday has been found safe, police say.

In a tweet posted late Wednesday evening, the Saint John Police Force noted that they were "pleased to announce" that Gerald Surnode was safe, and that more details would follow.

The news follows a tense three days of intensifying worries and searches.

Surnode, who is 17, was reported missing after he left Samuel de Champlain school in the city's north side on Monday afternoon.

Sightings put him in the area not far from the school on Monday night and Tuesday morning.

The search intensified in the following days, with a ground search conducted Tuesday evening until just before midnight, with residents in the area asked to check any outbuildings on their property and a team of investigators canvassing residences and searching shorelines in the area.

Gerald's family was at Samuel de Champlain during the search, joined by several teachers who stayed throughout the evening as searchers walked the area around the school.

"It was like all the air was taken out of the room as they just sat by the windows and looked out, waiting for movement — something — a sign," said Father Aaron Knox, who has known Gerald and his family since he became the priest at their family church, Saint-François-de-Sales Roman Catholic Church, in 2018.

On Wednesday afternoon, mass at Saint-François-de-Sales was dedicated to Gerald and to his safe return.

On Wednesday evening, after hearing the news that Gerald has been found safe, Knox posted the jubilant news on Facebook and announced that a mass of thanksgiving will be held at the church Friday at 6 p.m.

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