Missing Prinsburg man found alive in Kandiyohi County soybean field

The missing bicylist from Prinsburg

Kandiyohi County Detective Kent Bauman informs, left, Abby Heiderscheit that her missing grandfather Donald Leroy Wieberdink had been found Wednesday evening at Green Lake Bible Camp in Spicer while the organized volunteer search was underway. Erica Dischino / West Central Tribune

SPICER — Following a massive search and rescue effort, Donald Leroy Wieberdink, the 83-year-old Prinsburg bicyclist reported missing since Tuesday afternoon, was found early Wednesday evening just east of Spicer, according to the Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office.

Wieberdink was located barefoot and sunburnt but in good spirits and was transported to Carris Health — Rice Hospital in Willmar, according to a Kandiyohi County news release.

"God is good," said Jude Wieberdink, in response to the good news. She is a relative of Donald's who came out to volunteer to search for the bicyclist with her husband, Wes Wieberdink, and others.

Donald Leroy Wieberdink


The effort to find Donald Wieberdink following his disappearance in the Spicer area more than 24 hours prior involved multiple government agencies, including the Civil Air Patrol which flew over the search area Wednesday.

Wieberdink was eventually found in a bean field near the 11000 block of County Road 4 Northeast.

Almost 30 government agencies and groups assisted in finding him.

More than 100 people showed up Wednesday in Spicer in response to a call from the Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office for volunteers to aid in the search.

The sheriff’s office said Wieberdink had stopped at a farm site east of Spicer Tuesday afternoon to ask for directions and was later seen on his bicycle near the intersection of County Road 2 and County Road 10 in Harrison Township.

"It's unbelievable community support," said Rick Orred, who grew up in Spicer. "Cars were around the block."

Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Sgt. Kent Bauman said the plan was for volunteers to do foot searches on areas that been looked over previously.



"We want to be comfortable that areas have been searched," Bauman said.

Officials had been worried about Wieberdink's previous health issues, like dementia, and his exposure to the elements but were still considering it to be a search for someone who was alive.

The volunteer search was not even an hour old when there were cheers from the crowd amid the announcement came about 5:24 p.m. that Wieberdink had been found. The volunteers dispersed knowing a community member in need was now in the hands of his rescuers.

Wes said he's known Donald all his life, first working on Donald's farm and then working as his insurance agent.

Prinsburg is a pretty tight-knit community, according to Wes, who said that he recognized a lot of the faces that were in line to register in order to split off into search party groups.

Prior to Wieberdink being found, Wes mentioned he was concerned but hopeful.

"Gotta be hopeful," Wes said.

It turns out Wes was right.


"That's what we were hoping for. That's what we were praying for," Wes said. "I can't wait to talk to him."

Mark Wasson has been a public safety reporter with Post Bulletin since May 2022. Previously, he worked as a general assignment reporter in the southwest metro and as a public safety reporter in Willmar, Minn. Readers can reach Mark at
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