A 19-year-old teenager from BC went missing after going for a swim in a local lake. Shortly after he went missing, the authorities were called and a mission was launched to find him.
The boy went missing on Tuesday afternoon. Since then, Coquitlam RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) launched a recovery mission to find the missing teenager. The mission was activated on Tuesday evening at 5 PM.
Coquitlam SAR activated by the RCMP at 5pm for reports of a missing male swimmer. We responded with 20 members and two boats with Coq SAR Marine and Field teams are currently conducting water and shoreline searches. @cqrcmp, @SasamatFire @BC_EHS on scene. pic.twitter.com/gHhuvsqzD5— Coquitlam SAR (@CoquitlamSAR) July 18, 2018
Over 24 hours later, the RCMP's expert divers were able to recover the missing teenager's body.
Corporal Michael McLaughlin said in a release that the boy, who is from Surrey B.C., was not engaging in any dangerous behaviour before his mysterious disappearance. McLaughlin said the Surrey teenager was in a group of five friends before the incident occurred.
The group of friends was on Buntzen Lake, a very common swimming area in the Tri-Cities. Buntzen Lake is located in Anmore, British Columbia in the Greater Vancouver area. Locals use the lake for swimming, boating and the trail around the perimeter of the lake is a very well known hiking trail.
According to the missing teenager's friends, they were lounging on floatation devices when the teenager suddenly disappeared. His friends did mention that he's not a strong swimmer, but no one saw him struggling before he went missing.
Since there were no indications that the boy was in distress before he disappeared, this makes the disappearance that much more strange, especially since swimmers frequent this lake.
In addition, McLaughlin stated that none of the teenagers were drinking or doing drugs so they don't believe foul play was involved in the incident.
On Wednesday night around 6 PM, the RCMP's Underwater Recovery Team finally found the teenager's body. After more than 24 hours, his body was found about 40 metres below the water by the spot where he was last seen.
The BC Coroners Service have scheduled an autopsy.
This isn't the only drowning that's happened in BC recently. Just yesterday, a 21-year-old man died after climbing a waterfall in BC. The Ontario man was visiting BC when he decided to climb a waterfall at Gold Creek in Golden Ears Park. When he fell, he was swept away by the strong current and died.
Just a few weeks ago, three popular YouTubers died after swimming at a pool at the top of Shannon Falls waterfall in BC. After one of the YouTubers, Megan Scraper fell from the pool, her boyfriend Alexey Lyakh and their friend Ryker Gamble tried to save her but they fell and were found in a pool down below the falls.
This is another reminder that as summer begins, it's important to remember to be safe and pay careful attention to signs when you're hiking, swimming or adventuring in BC parks.