The human remains discovered in the Ottawa River near Pembroke late last week are those of Trinity Poil, a 16-year-old Petawawa teenager missing for three months, Ontario Provincial Police confirmed on Tuesday.
Poil was last seen by her family on the night of Feb. 12, and was reported missing, according to Captain Karyn Mazurek, senior public affairs officer for Garrison Petawawa Military Police.
It’s believed Poil left her home at the Garrison Petawawa base overnight, which happened to be the night of the region’s worst snowfall this past winter, Mazurek said.
“Any trace of her was swept away by the wind and snow,” the military police spokesperson said. “It was an impossible start to a terrible situation.”
During the weeks that followed, Poil’s family celebrated the teenager’s 17th birthday without her, Mazurek said.
On Friday, Upper Ottawa Valley OPP reported that human remains had been discovered the evening before in the river in Laurentian Valley Township, south of Petawawa.
In an update on Tuesday morning, the detachment said a postmortem had been conducted but did not offer details on Poil’s cause of death.
Mazurek said Garrison Petawawa was informed late Monday that the body found had been identified as Poil. Military police will continue to work closely with OPP and the coroner’s office to determine the circumstances leading to Poil’s death, the spokesperson added.
News that a body was pulled from the river on Thursday came while OPP were also engaged in a separate search for another missing teenage girl, also from the Petawawa area.
On May 5, OPP launched helicopter and underwater searches for that 17-year-old missing teenager — whose name has not been released — in response to a report that she had entered the Petawawa River from the town’s rail bridge late that afternoon. Provincial police found no sign of the girl over two days and concluded those searches on May 7.
OPP Const. Shawn Peever said this missing person’s case remains open and active. His detachment’s marine unit will continue conducting scheduled patrols above water, he said.