Two teens dead, one missing after drowning in southern Alberta river: RCMP

Two teens dead, one missing after drowning in southern Alberta river: RCMP

SPRING COULEE , Alta. — Two teens who died and one who is missing after spending time boating with friends on a river in southern Alberta are from the Spring Valley Hutterite Colony, a community member says.

George Waldner said everyone in the colony is in shock.

“Words can’t describe how heavy it is,” Waldner said in an interview Thursday, adding that he did not want to identify the three girls out of respect for their families.

He said Hutterite colonies from other parts of the province and Saskatchewan have arrived to support people who are grieving.

“Everybody is tight in the community,” he said. “Relatives show up and everybody comes together.”

The group of teens were on the Saint Mary River around Spring Coulee, Alta., about halfway between Lethbridge and the United States border, on Wednesday evening. Waldner said they are all close friends.

They were drifting on the river in aluminum boats that are a little bigger than canoes, he added.

“The river was a little higher, which makes it fun and that’s what young people do,” Waldner said. ”But it was a little too aggressive and I don’t think they knew the river was swift like that.”

RCMP Cpl. Tammy Keibel said the two girls found dead were 16 and 17 years old. She could not give the exact age of the missing girl, but said she is about the same age.

The girls, who were at the river with seven other people, had trouble trying to get out of the water, an RCMP news release said.

Keibel added that the body of the 17-year-old was first discovered, and two other girls had been swept away.

Officers from several RCMP detachments and members of Lethbridge Search and Rescue worked into the night. The body of the 16-year-old was found Thursday morning and efforts continued to find the remaining teen.

— By Daniela Germano in Edmonton

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 11, 2020

The Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

47 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday in Alberta, still 620 active cases

3 active COVID-19 cases remain in Red Deer

New RCMP officer positions funded across rural Alberta

Thorsby included in detachments receiving funds for new positions.

Bitcoin scam nearly costs Red Deer man $90k

It was a simple sign that saved the day for one almost-… Continue reading

COVID-19: Central zone at four active

Alberta confirms 130 cases Monday

Wetaskiwin Public Library won’t reopen until Phase 3 of Alberta re-launch

Books can be checked out online for contactless pick-up at library doors.

City of Wetaskiwin Canada Day decorating contest finalists

Voting is open July 7-12, 2020 to choose the grand prize winner.

‘Divine event:’ Surgeon who helped man after hike operates on him days later

‘Divine event:’ Surgeon who helped man after hike operates on him days later

Photos surface of Andrew Scheer failing to wear mask while travelling

Photos surface of Andrew Scheer failing to wear mask while travelling

N.L. officials warn of potential fines in response to crowded bar photos

N.L. officials warn of potential fines in response to crowded bar photos

Promise of COVID-19 funds to support disabled Canadians remains in limbo

Promise of COVID-19 funds to support disabled Canadians remains in limbo

Charities battered by COVID-19 say federal support desperately needed

Charities battered by COVID-19 say federal support desperately needed

Turbulence in Canadian opinion on airlines COVID-19 response: poll

Turbulence in Canadian opinion on airlines COVID-19 response: poll

Canadian airlines accused of ignoring COVID precautions, denying refunds

Canadian airlines accused of ignoring COVID precautions, denying refunds

Budget officer pegs cost of basic income as calls for it grow due to COVID-19

Budget officer pegs cost of basic income as calls for it grow due to COVID-19

Most Read