La Porte deputies conducting death investigation

LA PORTE COUNTY, Ind. -- The La Porte County Sheriff's Office is conducting an investigation into the death of a 70-year-old Hudson Lake resident.

Deputies were called to a residence in the 7500 E block of Tulip Lane in Hudson Lake Wednesday morning to take a missing person report.

The cousin and caretaker of 70-year-old Vernon Ringler told deputies when she arrived Wednesday morning to check on him, she couldn't find Ringler or his dog.

She had last checked on him around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday evening.

The immediate area was checked and Ringler was not found.

A K-9 unit was called in to track Ringler.

Approximately 150 yards from his home, Deputy Greer and his K-9 located a knit hat and flashlight, as well as Ringler's dog, near a steep slope that led to a pond.

Ringler's body was located partially in the pond.

Detectives said Ringler had recently had cataract surgery and had been wearing dark sunglasses. In addition, his family suspects he was in the early stages of undiagnosed Alzheimer's.

There was no trauma to his body and foul play is not suspected.

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