Search continues Saturday for Truro, N.S., toddler missing for more than a year

Members of Ground Search and Rescue during a search for three-year-old Dylan Ehler in the Old Barns area on Saturday. Alexa MacLean/Global News

The search continued Saturday for Dylan Ehler, a Nova Scotia toddler who’s been missing since May 2020.

In a Facebook post, the Truro Police Service said they, along with Ground Search and Rescue, are conducting a search of the waterways and beaches in the Old Barns area.

Read more: Missing child Dylan Ehler’s parents still searching one year later

“There is no new evidence or information that has led to the search of this area, just a desire to be as complete and thorough as possible,” it said.

“Our goal remains locating Dylan and bringing closure to his family.”

Three-year-old Dylan Ehler at his home in Truro. Submitted by Jason Ehler

Police said Saturday is the only day they’re looking. They wanted to search the area earlier in the spring but were disrupted by the third wave of COVID-19.

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The three-year-old went missing on May 6, 2020, while visiting his grandmother’s house on Elizabeth Street in Truro. His family said Dylan was playing in the backyard and vanished when his grandmother turned her back to put a dog on the leash.

It’s presumed the child drowned in the nearby Lepper Brook, which feeds into the Salmon River which runs into the Bay of Fundy.

Read more: ‘We never provoked them’: Parents of missing N.S. toddler take legal action over online harassment

Dylan’s body has never been found, just his rubber boots, which police found in the waterway on May 6, 2020, roughly seven hours after he was reported missing.

One boot was tangled along with debris in the Lepper Brook, while the other boot was found further down the river by firefighters searching the water.

Truro police and emergency first responders conducted a search of the area for a week before calling it off. Police have said they do not suspect any foul play.

‘A living nightmare’

The search for little Dylan never stopped for his family.

On Saturday, his father Jason Ehler was leading a search of his own out in the Grand Village area. He told Global News he looks for his son almost every day.

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“He’s a three-year-old little boy that needs to be found. He’s not a lost puppy, he’s a human being,” said Ehler.

The search is separate from the one conducted by the Truro police and Ground Search and Rescue.

Jason Ehler, Dylan’s father, says he searches for his son almost every day. Alexa MacLean/Global News

Ehler said after a year, his searches aren’t getting as much support as they used to.

“The past year’s been a living nightmare, and I find that as more time goes by … people, they’re not forgetting, but there’s no help,” he said.

“It’s rough all the way around. I can’t even lie. You break down a little bit every day, a little more, a little more. It’s hard.”

Not knowing what happened is the worst part for Ehler. Some days, he believes Dylan may have been kidnapped. Other days, he believes his son was indeed taken by the river.

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“It’s hard to say what happened. It drives me crazy, it drives Ashley (Dylan’s mom) crazy,” he said.

“We’re in limbo … It’s like he disappeared off the face of the earth.”

Click to play video: 'One-year anniversary of Dylan Ehler’s disappearance' One-year anniversary of Dylan Ehler’s disappearance
One-year anniversary of Dylan Ehler’s disappearance – May 6, 2021

— With files from Alexa MacLean

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