Missing 20-Year-Old Student Found Dead By His Own Father

Scott Robert Fippinger was an avid surfer and junior at California State University San Marcos who was reported missing on Jan. 14 while on vacation with friends in Mexico. For more than one week, an extensive search party made up of both volunteers and Mexican officials searched the seas for Scott but were unable to find him. And then the one person who loved him most had the misfortune of making a shocking discovery.


Scott's father, Eric Fippinger, who is a retired Marine colonel and pilot, took matters into his own hands and searched for his son in his own private plane. He says he had been flying back and forth around Rosarito Beach when he spotted his son in the water about a mile away from a cliff. He then asked his ground team to pick Scott up by boat.

I can't even imagine the thoughts that ran through this poor father's head.

Scott's friends say they were camping on a cliff when the young man got up and left his tent at around 3:30 a.m. They assumed he was going to use the bathroom. But when they woke up the next morning, Scott wasn't there.

Because of the windy conditions on the morning he vanished, it is assumed Scott was blown over the side of the cliff, where he fell about 40 feet. His cell phone was found right by the edge of the cliff.

Despite having a search crew that consisted of divers, boats, and helicopters, it's unbelievable—and unbelievably sad—to think that his father was the person who located him. Scott was reportedly majoring in anthropology with a minor in Spanish and had made the dean's list.

There are few things sadder than a parent losing his child. We wish Scott's family all of the comfort in the world at this difficult time.


Image via Melissa Wiese/Flickr

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