Body of missing man found

Goudensio Gayton missing since Oct. 12 from Shring of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The search is over for a 74-year-old man who went missing from the Shrine of Our Lady Of Guadalupe nearly two weeks ago.

Search teams found the body of Goudensio Gayton earlier Saturday afternoon.

Vernon County Sheriff John Spears said a K-9 Unit found Gayton’s body at about 2 p.m. in a densely wooded area about two and a half miles east of County Highway K in the town of Hamburg. That is about a half mile east of where a trail camera photographed Gayton the night he went missing.

Gayton has been missing since Oct. 12 when he was last seen at the Shrine.

“Each time we searched we kept expanding our areas of search and again today when we searched the areas we had predetermined we just started doing secondary searches and expanding that. (Where the body was found) was in an area that was in the primary search today that we had listed,” Spears said.

Spears said his department has been searching for Gayton every day since he went missing, both on the ground and in the air.

Saturday there were about 70 volunteers trained in search and rescue from all across Wisconsin and Minnesota searching for Gayton. Crews used all-terrain-vehicles, were on horseback, there were several K-9 units and people on foot.

“I’m glad we were able to bring some closure to the family,” Spears said.

There is no word yet on a cause of death.

The body is being sent to the Vernon County Medical Examiner for an autopsy.


The Vernon County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help finding a man who has been missing since Sunday, Oct. 12.

Goudensio Gayton, 74, got separated from his family at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Oct. 12. He was last seen around 6:40 p.m.

Vernon County Sheriff John Spears is asking for sportsmen, hunters and land owners to check their game cameras for any possible sightings of Gayton.

Area law enforcement agencies have been investigating tips and calls from the public and have conducted multiple searches for Gayton.

The Sheriff’s Department received a call on Saturday, Oct. 18 from a resident in the Town of Hamburg who was reviewing photos on one of his game cameras. The caller found several pictures of Gayton, which were dated Oct. 12, the day Gayton went missing. The camera was located about two miles from CTH K, along a wood line, one mile from the hunter’s house.

The Sheriff’s Department said law enforcement immediately conducted a search of that area, along with K-9s and the Coon Valley Fire Department. The search continued until dark and they were not able to locate Gayton.

Spears contacted local fire departments for a larger search effort to begin on Sunday with the aide of eight fire departments from Viroqua, Westby, Viola, Coon Valley, Genoa, LaFarge, Hillsboro, and Ontario. The search also included help from the Vernon County Emergency Management, Vernon County Sheriff’s Office Mounted Patrol, Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit, Tri-State Ambulance, bloodhound “Peach” and Tim Devine of La Crosse County and bloodhound “Beckitt” and Diana Gwilt of Vernon County Search and Rescue.

Gayton was last seen wearing dress shoes, blue pants, black leather jacket and a white cowboy hat. Gayton is 5′ tall, has gray facial hair and does not speak any English.

If you have any information about Gayton, contact the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office at (608) 637-2123 or the La Crosse Police Department at (608) 785-5962.

Body of missing man found

PREVIOUS STORY (October 13, 2014):

La Crosse police are asking for help finding a missing man.

Officers say 74 year old Goudensio Gaytan got separated from his family at the Our Lady of Guadalupe Shrine around 2:00 p.m. on Sunday.

Gaytan is visiting relatives in Iowa from Mexico and doesn’t speak any English.

He was spotted sitting on a guard rail on County Road K, about 3.5 miles east of Highway 35 at 6:30 p.m. La Crosse Police say they’ve gotten a few tips that he was seen Sunday evening in Northern Vernon County. They believe he may be trying to find his way back to the family in Iowa.

Gaytan is a 74-year-old Hispanic male, 5? tall, 140 lbs with gray hair. He was wearing a white sombrero hat, black leather coat and blue jeans.

If you have any information, please call the La Crosse Police Department at (608)785-5962.