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If what you search is only part of the strings in the searched cells, perhaps you have enable the option:
Menu/Tools/Options/LibreOffice calc/Calculate - Search criteria = and <> must apply to whole cells.
if disable works for me.
But with this option disable there it's a bug that makes calc slow searching string lists, specially visible with large ranges for search.
If this is the case you can use regular expressions with the option enable.
:=COUNTIF(B7:R29;".*"&E2&".*")
Only be aware there are no characters to search that are part of regular expressions.