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Tragic end to massive search for missing Squamish 15-year-old

Click to play video: 'Hundreds join search for missing teen in Squamish' Hundreds join search for missing teen in Squamish
WATCH: Hundreds of community members and volunteers joined the official search for a missing 15-year-old in Squamish Friday. – Sep 24, 2021

The multi-day search for a missing Squamish 15-year-old has ended in tragedy, officials said Saturday.

Squamish RCMP said the body of Richie Stelmack was located Saturday morning in the Mashiter area of the Garabaldi Highlands.

Officials have not said how Stelmack ended up in the area. On Friday, search crews said it was still unclear why he had left his home or where he was going.

Police say there was no evidence of foul play, and that the RCMP and BC Coroners Service would complete an investigation.

“Squamish Fire, Squamish RCMP, Squamish and Search and Rescue first send thoughts to the family of Richie our hearts go out to them,” RCMP Sgt. Sascha Banks said in a media release.

Read more: More than 800 volunteers turn out to hunt for missing Squamish teen

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“We also would like to thank all the support and the assistance from the community of Squamish and surrounding area, along with the media who made sure everything was done to find Richie. It has been a very hard and difficult few days and this was not the ending we had hoped for. One thing I know Squamish will do in the coming days and weeks is we will rally around Richie’s family, friends, and our community members.”

Stelmack was last seen going to bed Tuesday night around 10 p.m. at his family home in the Garibaldi Highlands.

His disappearance sparked a massive search effort, including a door-to-door urban search on Friday involving more than 800 community volunteers.

That search helped crews narrow down efforts to several more technical areas, including canyons and rivers, where specialized teams were deployed on Saturday.

Emergency crews were expected to be in the Mashiter area throughout the day, and drivers were being advised to avoid The Boulevard and expect delays.

Click to play video: '15-year-old reported missing in Squamish' 15-year-old reported missing in Squamish
15-year-old reported missing in Squamish – Sep 23, 2021

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