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North Shore Rescue asks for help to bring closure to some local families

FILE: Members of North Shore Rescue. (Courtesy North Shore Rescue)

NORTH VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – It’s been days, weeks, months and in one case a year and still no clues.

Rescue crews on the North Shore mountains have a wish this holiday season — for your help to find those who have vanished in the backcountry.

It’s been exactly one year since two snowshoers vanished near Cypress Mountain. Crews had trouble tracking them because it wasn’t clear what route they took. 43-year-old Roy Lee and 64-year-old Chun Lam haven’t been seen since, however, their abandoned car was found in the parking lot of the mountain shortly after their reported disappearance.

Meantime, this past Halloween, North Shore Rescue canvassed areas around Lynn Creek east of the Hanes Valley trail to find Carl Couture. The 24-year-old had recently arrived on the Lower Mainland and went for a hike around Grouse Mountain, but was never seen again.

Team Leader Mike Danks says they’re hoping to provide families with some closure this holiday season and they need your help.

“If you see any articles of clothing or anything like that on any of the local mountains, please notify the police. Take a picture of it, leave it in place, get some coordinates of where it is and then we will investigate that.”

Danks adds sometimes crews aren’t notified right away about a missing person and with a heavy snowfall, it can make their job incredibly difficult.

“We didn’t get notified of (Carl Couture) being missing for three days and during that time there was a huge front that came through and dumped a tremendous amount of snow back there and for the lower elevations, it brought a lot of rain.”

Danks admits both cases have gone from a rescue mission to a recovery operation.

He adds it’s critical to tell someone where you’re going, pack the appropriate equipment and if you don’t know the trails very well — don’t go.

It’s also important to be dressed for the conditions. For example, Couture had been wearing a light fleece jacket, sweatpants and running shoes. He’s white, about 6’2″ tall, 165 pounds with short blond hair, brown eyes and he wears glasses.