UPDATE: Missing Marquette County snowmobiler found deceased

Published: Jan. 8, 2019 at 6:35 PM EST
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UPDATE: Wednesday, January 9, 5:45 p.m.

The search has concluded for missing snowmobiler, Dennis Pellinen, of Ishpeming.

Marquette County Sheriff Greg Zyburt confirmed that Pellinen was found deceased just off North Rock Road in Delta County around 4:45 p.m. Wednesday by Marquette County Sheriff's deputies.

Speed and alcohol are believed to be factors in the crash.

Deputies determined Pellinen was last seen in Rock at approximately 1:00 a.m. Sunday. Originally it was thought Pellinen left on his snowmobile Sunday around 6:00 p.m. That turned out not to be the case.

The accident scene has been turned over to the Delta County Sheriff's office for investigation.

Sheriff Zyburt wanted to thank the community, especially those of McFarland, who were helpful throughout the search. Also, Valley Med Flight, who donated their services to help in the search.


The search continues for a missing snowmobiler who was last seen in his McFarland home, in southern Marquette County, Sunday.

On Tuesday afternoon, search and rescuers lined County Road 444 looking for 54-year-old Dennis Pellinen, of Ishpeming. Pellinen hasn't been seen since family members heard him leave his McFarland home Sunday evening on snowmobile.

"That's all we know, we think he took off Sunday night and then never returned," said Marquette County Undersheriff Dan Willey.

The Marquette County Sheriff's Office says after Pellinen didn't show up to work Monday, family members filed the missing person's report Monday evening.

"We searched roads and trails and everywhere we could on snowmobiles and side by sides until about 1:00 a.m. Tuesday," said Undersheriff Willey. "They quit for the night and then came back out here in the morning."

The Marquette County Sheriff's Office, Delta County Search and Rescue, the Michigan State Police canine units and neighbors are combing the area around Pellinen's home. Valley Med Flight assisted in fly overs of the area and the Michigan State Police chopper will be in the area early morning Wednesday. Undersheriff Willey says the weekend's snowfall has made search efforts more difficult.

"We're going to keep searching," said Undersheriff Willey. "We'll see how things go because we don't have a lot of resources, but we're using what we have."

The Sheriff's Office says they were able to ping Pellinen's cell phone as having been used in the general area Saturday night and since then they haven't had any luck in locating that cell phone. That means Pellinen's cell phone could be dead or turned off.

Pellinen was driving a blue and gray Yamaha snowmobile and was wearing a black jacket. Authorities say he wasn't wearing a helmet when he left his McFarland home.

Anyone with any information or leads on Pellinen's whereabouts is encouraged to contact Marquette County Central Dispatch at 906-475-9912.