Skip to main content

Missing Sudbury politician is dead, police confirm


Greater Sudbury police found the remains of Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini on Tuesday.

Vagnini, 62, left home Jan. 27 in his Dodge Ram 1500 truck and had not been seen since. His family said he did not have his cellphone or his medication with him.

After an extensive search with police resources and volunteers, his truck was found at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday in the area of Reserve Camp Road on Atikiameksheng Anishnawbek First Nation.

“Michael Vagnini was located deceased a short distance from the vehicle,” Sudbury police said in a news release.

“Detectives are in the preliminary stages of the death investigation and at this time. Foul play is not suspected.”

A post-mortem will be conducted to determine the cause of death.

“We would like to thank our officers, police professionals and detectives, as well as members of the OPP and North Shore Search and Rescue who dedicated hundreds of hours to this investigation,” police said.

“Many of these individuals knew Michael personally and wanted nothing more than a positive outcome. Since the time that Michael was reported missing, the outpouring of support from the community has been unparalleled.

"Michael Vagnini was a beloved member of this community and an advocate for GSPS, not only through his role on city council, but as a member of the police services board having served as both the chair and vice-chair. We are extremely saddened to hear of his death, and we will continue to support his family throughout the investigation.”

Generosity and passion

Mayor Paul Lefebvre said in a statement that his "heart goes out" to Vagnini's family.

“His generosity and passion for his community were unmatched," the statement said.

"He will be greatly missed. Thank you to the Greater Sudbury Police Service for their tireless work during the investigation and search efforts, and to all those in our community who dedicated time to help find him.”

Vagnini was elected to city council in 2014, one of 10 new faces elected following the tumultuous years of former Mayor Marianne Matichuck.

He entered Tom Davies Square with former Mayor Brian Bigger, with whom he frequently clashed. Vagnini was particularly vocal in supporting volunteer firefighters.

He was unopposed in his re-election bid in 2018 and won 60 per cent of the vote in the 2022 election.

Vagnini was known for his flamboyant suits and community work, including hosting an annual Christmas dinner for the less fortunate that he called, ‘No One Eats Alone.’ 

Flags at city facilities will be flown at half-mast beginning Wednesday morning. Information on arrangements, including details on a public book of condolences, will be available in the coming days, the city said. Top Stories

Stay Connected