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Elderly man en route to Batesville reported 'critically missing'

An elderly man traveling from Texas to the Charlottesville area has been reported "critically missing." His health and safety may be in danger, police said Wednesday.

Don Gehr Benson Jr., 83, was last seen in Texas at around 5:30 a.m., according to Virginia State Police.

While Benson was said to be headed to Batesville in Albemarle County west of Charlottesville, the last ping from his mobile phone came at 6:13 p.m. from Chesterfield, police said. That’s nearly 100 miles east of his final destination.

Benson was described as being 6 feet tall, weighing 170 pounds with hazel eyes and gray hair.

"There is no description of clothing they were last seen wearing," state police said in a Wednesday statement.

Benson was possibly driving a white 2016 Toyota Tacoma pickup displaying Texas plates reading, "HJL-9815."

"If located, approach with caution," Virginia State Police said in their Wednesday statement. "This disappearance poses a credible threat to their health and safety as determined by the investigating agency."

That agency is the Albemarle County Police Department.

Anyone with any information on Benson or his whereabouts is encouraged to contact the Albemarle police at (434) 977-9041.


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