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Bodies of Lil’wat Nation mushroom pickers found in B.C., ending search

Click to play video: 'Missing  mushroom pickers found dead near Pemberton' Missing mushroom pickers found dead near Pemberton
A tragic end to the search for two missing mushroom pickers near Pemberton after they went missing last Thursday – Oct 30, 2020

RCMP have announced a tragic ending in the search for a father and son who went missing near the Pemberton, B.C., area earlier this week.

Police said 48-year-old Peter Oleski and 21-year-old River Leo’s bodies were found Thursday afternoon.

On Oct. 23, Squamish RCMP were called in to help Stl’atl’imx Tribal Police in the search for the two men who had been reported missing after going mushroom picking in the Upper Mckenzie Basin the previous night.

Their bodies were found Thursday afternoon by a Lil’wat Nation volunteer and local search and rescue, RCMP announced Thursday night.

Click to play video: 'Urgent search for missing mushroom pickers' Urgent search for missing mushroom pickers
Urgent search for missing mushroom pickers – Oct 26, 2020

“Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Peter and River and with the Lil’wat Nation,” said Sgt. Sascha Banks of the Sea to Sky RCMP.

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“The determination of the Lil’wat community and the search and rescue teams was inspiring to all those who participated in the search.  Although this is not the ending we had all hoped for, I am thankful they were located, as this is not always the case with those that go missing in our backcountry.”

A GoFundMe campaign has been established for the family.

The two men had ventured into the Upper Mackenzie Basin, north of Pemberton, according to Pemberton RCMP.

Read more: Search for missing father-and-son mushroom pickers to resume near Pemberton, B.C.

The Lil’wat Nation said last week the men’s red 1997 Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck was found near the Mackenzie Basin upper paragliding launch area.

Earlier this week, search crews believed River Leo’s phone had been turned on. However, it was later revealed the signal came from someone calling his phone and the call going to voicemail, the Lil’wat Nation confirmed.

The B.C. Coroner’s Service along with The Stl’atl’imx Tribal Police and Pemberton RCMP are investigating.

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