Family, friends search for missing Auckland businessman Denver Chance

5:46 pm on 6 March 2019

The family of missing man Denver Chance says the past week has been "hideous", but they are not giving up hope they will find him alive.

Denver Chance

Denver Chance Photo: Supplied

Hundreds of family and friends of Mr Chance have taken to the streets of Auckland and further to search for the missing 43-year-old businessman.

He was was last seen on CCTV footage heading down Auckland's Southern Motorway near Drury after he left his North Shore home nine days ago.

Police said they had growing concerns something might have happened to him.

Mr Chance's mother, Paula McGregor, said in a just released statement: "There have been many sleepless nights, and this past week has been hideous - a total emotional rollercoaster for our family."

She said it was not like him not to be in touch with family and friends.

"But we are not giving up hope on finding him.

"He might look like a big tough guy, but he is an absolute softie, a gentle giant. He's an animal lover and really likes to travel, is into fitness and has a wicked sense of humour.

"He likes to play the clown and he adores his sister Ginny, who has travelled from the United States to help in the search for him.

Ms McGregor said the family had been overwhelmed by the number of his friends and people who have offered to help find him.

Family member and friend Herbert Fowles said people were following routes Mr Chance might have taken.

"In the hundreds at least, the amount of people that shared it across my Facebook friends, their family friends and all the hot rod clubs and car clubs that we shared it on we've even had friends in Christchurch sharing it.

"It's definitely spread across but yeah, still unfortunately haven't found anything."

He put up his drone in South Auckland - one of five searching from the skies. They've extended their range to Coromandel Peninsula, Waikato, Hunua Ranges and North of Auckland.

"I got asked by his cousin directly if I could come around these areas get some aerial footage, see if there's anything gone off the road or just any sort of signs that we could find at all."

Herbert Fowles, a friend and family member of missing man Denver Chance, has been using his drone to help in the search.

Herbert Fowles, a friend and family member of missing man Denver Chance, has been using his drone to help in the search. Photo: RNZ / Brooke Jenner

Mr Chance was wearing shorts and a singlet and is described as being of solid build with dark brown hair and a tattoo on his shoulder and down his left arm.

Police have said his red 2008 Nissan Skyline was last seen on the Southern Motorway heading south past the Drury exit just after 4pm on Sunday 24 February.

However, Mr Fowles said police were not saying much.

"It's up in the air. Police aren't giving up much information, the information they are giving us has been quite delayed.

"It's mainly just everyone getting out personally on foot and trying to see what we can find."

His mother, Paula McGregor, told RNZ she had not lost hope of finding her son and was praying for him.

"He was going to come and visit me and said 'shall we go and do a movie, mum," she said.

Gary Hoff has been friends with Mr Chance for 17 years and said the disappearance was completely out of character.

"He left without anything as well - like he didn't take his toothbrush or laptop or anything like that.

"He's very connected to his businesses through his computer and whatnot so he's just disappeared off the face of the earth and I don't think it's through any of his own doing."

Mr Hoff says his friend is a motivated, driven person and has run many different businesses over the years.

"He's had ups and downs with that but lately he's been doing well with that stuff, you know, which - I dunno, just makes it even worse I guess.

"He's just reached a point that he's really happy with and been travelling quite a lot."

Police believe the key to finding Mr Chance will be tracking down his car.

While they are still treating this as a missing person's case, they have growing concerns something might have happened to him.

Denver Chance's car - a red 2008 Nissan Skyline.

Denver Chance's car - a red 2008 Nissan Skyline. Photo: Supplied / Police