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RCMP mark 2nd anniversary of cowboy’s mysterious disappearance in B.C. Interior

Click to play video: 'Family of missing Merritt cowboy make emotional plea' Family of missing Merritt cowboy make emotional plea
It's been two years since Merritt cowboy Ben Tyner disappeared. Police say they believe he was the victim of homicide, and his family is now issuing a plea, and offering a reward for any information about what happened to him. Catherine Urquhart reports – Jan 26, 2021

It’s been two years since Ben Tyner went missing near Merritt, B.C., with a massive search for the ranch-hand coming up empty.

On Tuesday, Merritt RCMP released a public plea from Tyner’s family requesting any information regarding the cowboy’s disappearance.

Police believe Tyner was a victim of foul play, and the family is offering $15,000 for any information that leads to the location of their son, as well as the arrest and conviction of those responsible for his death.

Read more: Teams from across province continue search for missing Merritt, B.C., cowboy

“The investigation into the disappearance of Ben Tyner continues to be diligently led by the RCMP Southeast District Major Crime Unit,” said RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey.

“To date, numerous investigational avenues have been explored, and in order to protect the ongoing investigation, police are unable to share those findings publicly at this time.

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“However, based on those findings, major crime investigators have reason to believe that criminality was involved in Ben Tyner’s disappearance, and is the victim of a homicide.”

Tyner was reported missing after loggers found his riderless, but fully geared horse on Monday, Jan. 28, 2019, along a logging road off Highway 97, near Winnie Flats.

Click to play video: 'Heartfelt appeal from family of missing cowboy' Heartfelt appeal from family of missing cowboy
Heartfelt appeal from family of missing cowboy – Feb 13, 2019

He was last seen on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019, at around 2 p.m.

Police said local ranchers were notified, with the ranchers retrieving the horse and also identifying its owner.

Tyer, then 32, had been working at a local ranch and was on his days off.

The ensuing search involved multiple search agencies and spanned several days.

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“Today, Ben’s parents continue to suffer with the unexplained loss of their son,” Merritt RCMP said in a press release of Jennifer and Richard Tyner.

Click to play video: 'Mysterious disappearance of Merritt cowboy now deemed suspicious' Mysterious disappearance of Merritt cowboy now deemed suspicious
Mysterious disappearance of Merritt cowboy now deemed suspicious – Mar 19, 2019

“Ben’s disappearance has dramatically affected us,” Richard Tyner said in a video released by police. “The last two years have been filled with horrendous heartache, continued hope and many, many prayers.”

In the two-and-a-half-minute statement, Richard Tyner described his son as not only a cowboy, but a man who read a lot and enjoyed experiencing new places and cultures.

“To have to live with Ben’s loss is the most painful, excruciating experience ever. The loss we feel is immeasurable,” said Richard Tyner.

“As the second anniversary of Ben’s disappearance approaches, we continue to have unanswered questions. We are constantly praying that someone who knows something will come forward.”

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Click to play video: 'Missing B.C. cowboy mystery deepens' Missing B.C. cowboy mystery deepens
Missing B.C. cowboy mystery deepens – May 2, 2019

Police noted that the family’s private reward is being managed by the family and not the RCMP.

Anyone with any information is asked to call their local RCMP detachment, the Southeast District Major Crime Unit at 1-877-987-8477 or B.C. Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

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