2019-07-24 by W.M.
RCMP probing Northern B.C. site for young family that disappeared 30 years ago
There are several active and highly public RCMP search sites in Northern B.C. this week. But there’s also a much more discreetRCMP presenceat an undisclosed location near the Highway of Tears.
It’s a site where family and community members are hoping to find answers about the disappearance of a young family of four who vanished 30 years ago.
The Jacks were living in Prince George, about 200 kmfrom their rural home community of Burns Lake, when they went missing.
Ronnie and Doreen had been a couple since they were teenagers. By 1989 they were 26-years-old, raising their two boys, Russell and Ryan, in the city. On August 2, 1989, Ronnie talked to his mom on the phone and told her they were heading to a logging camp where they’d been offered work.
They were never heard from again.
Marlene Jack,one of Doreen’s younger sisters, has been unrelenting in her pursuit of answers about the family’s disappearance and haslong anticipated Wednesday’s search. She’s trying to remain positive thatit will bring to light new evidence.
“I’m so nervous,” said Marlene, standing on the side of Highway 16, often referred to as the Highway of Tears, waiting for the RCMP to pick her up and take her to the site.
“I hope we find something today, I really do.”
RCMPsay they aren’t releasing details about their current activities in order to protect the integrity of the investigation. But they are allowingJack and other community members to be on-site while they do their work.
Family member says search is a ‘huge step’
Across the country, in Fredericton, New Brunswick, First Nations chiefs and delegates are at a gathering of the Assembly of First Nations.
Corinna Leween, chief of the Cheslatta Carrier Nation, addressed the general assembly on Wednesday morning, asking people to say a special prayer”that they do find the family and that they can finally lay them to rest.”
“We’re hoping and we’re praying that this probe will produce some evidence, that they’ve found their families,” said Leween. She commended the family for their determination to keep the case active, and also gave thanks to the AFN for its support.
The last lead RCMP spoke publicly about was about a year ago, when they put out a news release asking an anonymous tipster to come forward and speak with them. They also said they know there are people who have information about what happened to the family who’ve never come forward, and asked those people, as well, to come forward.
Marlene saysnot a day goes by that she isn’t trying to keep her family’s case active, waiting for new information to come to light, coming up withways to advocate for her family and others who don’t have answers or justice for their missing and murdered loved ones.
She said Wednesday’s search is “a huge step” because the last search she’s aware of happened nine years ago.