RCMP confirm search on Melanson Mountain as part of Kenley Matheson disappearance case

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
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

RCMP in Nova Scotia confirmed they are searching a site in Kings County, alongside K9 and anthropology experts, as part of a three-decades old missing persons case.

Kenley Matheson was 20 years old and a student at Acadia University in Wolfville, N.S. when he was last seen on Sept. 21, 1992.

The Cape Breton man was just two weeks into his first semester when he disappeared “without a trace,” according to his younger sister Kayrene.

“It has been very difficult. Kenley and I were very close,” Kayrene told Global News last week.

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.

Story continues below advertisement

RCMP made another public plea for information in September 2022 to coincide with that documentary, but did not receive new information.

However, RCMP said in May of this year, they were told a search commissioned by the Globe and Mail had taken place on Melanson Mountain with the use of a cadaver dog.

“The dog indicated an area of interest; however, no human remains were located,” RCMP said in a Friday afternoon release.

Police said their own officers and the cadaver dog team visited the Melanson Mountain site on June 13 and found that the area “is on very steep terrain, and any search or excavation efforts would require safety precautions.”

They then asked the Nova Scotia Medical Examiner’s Office to assist and received permission from the property owner to conduct the search.

On Friday, a team of RCMP investigators, the medical examiner’s office, St. Thomas University’s anthropology department, Acadia University’s earth and environmental science department and Doug Teeft of Teeft K9 visited the site.

RCMP said they are making plans on the “best and most effective way to process the site both thoroughly, and safely.”

Family, friends and supporters held a 15-kilometre march in Wolfville, N.S., to honour Kenley Matheson, who has been missing for more than 30 years. Callum Smith/Global News

Last week, Matheson’s family and friends held a march in Wolfville — beginning at Acadia University — to bring attention to his case once again.

Story continues below advertisement

In an interview, his sister said that all they wanted was to “bring Kenley home.” She said the family was hopeful that the search for remains in Melanson Mountain would be successful.

“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.”

— with files from Global News’ Alex Cooke and Callum Smith 

Sponsored content