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Derek Lueking: Hiker missing in North Carolina

Update:  It has been found that Derek checked in the Microtel motel and surveillance video show he had left the motel at about 4 a.m. Saturday.

Update: Derek’s father Tim said that his son was a fan of the show, “Man vs. Wild,” and could have possibly brought a survival book, ax, knife and fishing gear with him.

Derek is a graduate of Johnson University in Knoxville and works as an orderly for Peninsula Behavioral Health Center.

His sister said a “Find Derek Lueking” page on Facebook was being created.

Derek Lueking, 24, from Louisville, Tennessee is believed to be missing in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Derek was last seen on Saturday at the Mictrotell Hotel in Cherokee, North Carolina.

Derek’s Ford Escape was found in the parking lot of the Newfound Gap.

Park rangers have searched the Appalachian Tail and more tan 40 miles around the area, but have not found Derek.

Derek if 5’11” tall, 220 pounds, with short brown hair and a short beard. 

If you know his whereabouts, please call 865-436-1230.



Jerrie Dean, who is retired from Federal Law Enforcement, is the Founder of Missing Persons of America and Missing Texas Forty.

8 thoughts on “Derek Lueking: Hiker missing in North Carolina

  1. My brother-in-law went missing from Newfound Gap at least a decade ago. His car was found in the parking lot, keys in the ignition. He has never been found. We have no idea whether he's alive or dead.I do hope that you find your son. It's hard not knowing what happened.

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