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Search for missing Minnesota pilot suspended for the night

Volunteers with the Civil Air Patrol take off from a field at the Duluth International Airport on another three-hour mission to search for the missing plane late Monday, June 11, 2012. (Bob King /

The search for a Lakeville, Minn., man ended for the night Tuesday with no sign of him or his twin-engine plane.

Minnesota's Civil Air Patrol said there were nine aircraft, 50 volunteers and two ground teams involved in the search for 67-year-old Mike Bratlie. Bratlie went missing Friday during a planned round-trip flight from St. Paul to Duluth.

Bratlie, a seasoned and retired Navy and Northwest Airlines pilot, left from South St. Paul on Friday in a Piper PA-31 Navajo. His family notified the Federal Aviation Administration when he did not return that night. There have been air, ground and water searches since he was reported missing. The search has been focused along the North Shore -- mostly in Cook County -- in heavily forested areas and across Lake Superior.

Searching will continue early Wednesday with air crews and ground teams from Minnesota and Wisconsin, according to the Civil Air Patrol.

Anyone who thinks they might have seen something that could help with the search is asked to call local law enforcement or 911.