The Coast News Group
Oceanside resident Nickolaos Christidis, 76, who went missing three weeks ago is believed to have been found dead on Aug. 15. Photo courtesy Oceanside Police Department
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Body found believed to be that of missing 76-year-old

OCEANSIDE — A 76-year-old Oceanside man, who was reported missing three weeks ago, is believed to have been found dead on Aug. 15.

Oceanside police are awaiting the Los Angeles coroner’s report to confirm the identification of Nickolaos Christidis.

A body thought to be that of Christidis was found in an unincorporated desert area of Los Angeles, seven miles off a main road near Lancaster.

Christidis voluntarily left his home July 22. His 2015 Honda was found stuck in the sand by a Los Angeles sheriff deputy on patrol Aug. 12.

Oceanside police were contacted by the sheriff, and the two agencies coordinated an air and ground search for Christidis, with desert temperatures reaching 120 degrees.

The air search did not present leads.

Oceanside police, Los Angeles sheriffs and civilian volunteers searched the surrounding hilly sand dunes by foot.

“We worked on the ground from the vehicle out,” Oceanside Police Detective Karla Williams said. “The desert terrain has dunes that peak and valley. There are shrubs, bushes, cactus. It’s not something where you can look out in every direction.”

Three days after the abandoned car was spotted a body thought to be Christidis was found three quarters of a mile from his car. Williams said the description and clothing match those of Christidis.

There are no indications of foul play.

Christidis was last seen July 23 in Rosamond, Calif. Phone records show he was all over the Palmdale area.

His daughter saw him a day earlier, and spoke with him by phone the morning of July 23. He told her he was in the desert and would be home in an hour.

She called him later that afternoon and his phone went straight to voicemail. She then filed a missing persons report.

Christidis’ family has been notified a body thought to be his was found.

Upon the coroner’s confirmation of his identity the missing person’s case will be closed. The cause of death is unknown at this time.