It was the outcome an entire town hoped would not come to pass. The body of Rodney Riviello was found Saturday, four days after the 69-year-old Manomet man walked out of Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Plymouth following treatment for a fall.

Police and fire officials offered few details Saturday except to say that the 69-year-old Riviello was discovered outdoors somewhere in Plymouth.

A post on the Plymouth Police Department’s Facebook page said that “no further information is available at this time,” but it promised an update in the “coming days.”

In a statement, Riviello’s family said it was “devastated.”

“This entire ordeal has been extremely difficult and unbelievable,” it said. “The only comfort we’ve had this week was holding on to hope that dad would come home safe and relying on the incredible support that our family, friends, the media, and the community of Plymouth have shown us.”

“Thank you to the Plymouth Police Department and all of the public safety agencies who have worked tirelessly since Tuesday to find our dad. And to the volunteers who have organized, searched, prayed, donated food, and held us in their hearts, we will never be able to adequately thank you enough.”

Police Chief Dana Flynn and Fire Chief Neil Foley also thanked the hundreds of people who participated in the search for Riviello, who went missing shortly after 11 a.m. on Tuesday, June 17.

On Thursday, police spokesperson Jason Higgins detailed the efforts to find Riviello, who had cognitive issues and was likely disoriented. The search involved “hundreds of police officers, firefighters, and EMS professionals from across the state of Massachusetts, many of whom are specifically trained in search and rescue operations,” he said. Searchers also used heat-sensing drones and State Police helicopters, as well as dogs trained to locate missing people. “We have physically checked miles and miles of area where we had hoped Mr. Riviello might be located,” Higgins said.

Riviello’s son, Dan, told the Independent Friday that he thinks a construction worker found his father after he fell on Tuesday morning and brought him to the Manomet fire station. From there, he was taken to Beth Israel Deaconess.

Dan said his father suffered a fractured nose and a bruise on his head in the fall. A CT scan showed issues with his brain that could have signaled cognitive problems, he said. The elder Riviello apparently left the hospital without telling anyone. He was not carrying a phone or wallet.

The only real clue in the case came from a rear-view car camera image that appeared to show Riviello walking on a Sandwich Street sidewalk toward Jabez Corner on the morning of his disappearance. But the image did not become known until Friday.

So far, Beth Israel Deaconess has not explained what may have happened, citing patient privacy restrictions.

Mark Pothier can be reached at

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