A N.S. man missing for 30 years and his family’s mission to bring him home

Click to play video: 'After 30 years, the family of a missing N.S. man continues on their mission to bring him home'
After 30 years, the family of a missing N.S. man continues on their mission to bring him home
WATCH: More than 30 years after an Acadia University student went missing, his family is still searching for answers. Allan "Kenley" Matheson disappeared early in the 1992 academic years. As Callum Smith reports, Matheson's family and supporters walked in his memory on Thursday, while hoping that a lead will present itself to help bring his remains home. – Jul 6, 2023

After more than 30 years of looking for answers, Kayrene Matheson just wants to bring her brother home.

A group of supporters joined Matheson and her mother for a march Thursday to honour her older brother Allan “Kenley” Matheson, who disappeared in 1992.

“We have a mission, which is bring Kenley home,” Matheson said.

Kenley, originally from Cape Breton, was 20 years old and two weeks into his first semester at Acadia University in Wolfville, N.S., when he vanished.

“It has been very difficult. Kenley and I were very close,” said his sister, who explained that they started at Acadia University together.

“I was straight out of high school, 18 years old, and he had traveled for two years, and so we were both first-year students,” she recalled.

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“Within two weeks, he disappeared without a trace.”

Allan “Kenley” Matheson was 20 years old when he went missing in 1992. RCMP released an age progression sketch of Matheson 25 years after his disappearance. RCMP

According to RCMP, Matheson had travelled to Corkum’s Island in Lunenburg County with some friends for the weekend and had returned to campus on Friday, Sept. 18, 1992. He was at a party on the Saturday and last seen by his sister on the Sunday at Crowell Tower at the university.

It was later reported a friend saw Matheson on Monday, Sept. 21 walking on Main Street in Wolfville. Since then, no one has seen or heard from Matheson and there has been no activity on his bank account.

In 2017, 25 years after his disappearance, the RCMP released an age progression sketch of Matheson, showing what he may look like in recent years.

The case was also added to the province’s Rewards for Major Unsolved Crimes Program and is the subject of a documentary series called Missing Kenley, which is available on Amazon Prime and Google Play.

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Missing closure

Ahead of the 10-kilometre march Thursday, which began at Acadia University, Matheson said some information has come forward in recent years that could bring them closer to the truth.

She said a family came forward in 2016, which had information suggesting the 20-year-old had been killed by a member of their family. A search for human remains was done at a site several kilometres from the university about six weeks ago, and Matheson said investigators are assembling a team to search the site further.

“We’re very happy about these recent developments, we’re very hopeful,” said Matheson.

Family, friends and supporters held a 10-kilometre march in Wolfville, N.S., to honour Kenley Matheson, who has been missing for more than 30 years. Callum Smith/Global News

She said the “ultimate goal” is to find her brother’s remains and bring him home.

“It’s going on 31 years, so we’re just hoping and praying that this is it,” she said. “With a missing person, it is a very difficult journey because … you don’t have that closure.”

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Kenley’s mother, Sarah MacDonald, said the lack of answers has been “extremely frustrating.”

“It’s just this feeling all the time in your gut that this is not right and there’s something missing,” she said.

“It just never added up.”

She said the turnout to the march Thursday was “phenomenal” and thanked their supporters for their efforts in bringing Kenley’s case to light.

Matheson agreed.

“We’re just so appreciative of everyone … all throughout Nova Scotia, all throughout the world, we’ve had support. And it really does help,” she said.

“And this is one of those beliefs that I have, that it will help bring Kenley home.”

The RCMP was unavailable to comment on the case Thursday, but a spokesperson said more information may be released next week.

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