McCanns remembered in memorial service
Published Saturday, July 30, 2011 5:01PM MDT
On what would have been Lyle and Marie McCann's 59th wedding anniversary, family members were joined by hundreds of friends and even strangers in a St. Albert church to honour them.
A public memorial service was held at the St. Albert Catholic Church Saturday morning, the reality of what the service meant a grim reminder to the couple's son.
"The finality of it if you will sank in today," Bret McCann said. "It is saying goodbye to my parents, it has sunk in."
The service comes after the couple's family posted an obituary in a St. Albert newspaper last weekend, and asked a judge to declare the couple legally deceased.
More than one year ago, the couple left in their motorhome on vacation to B.C.
Two days later, the motorhome was found burned at the Minnow Lake campground east of Edmonton and the vehicle they were towing was found abandoned several kilometres away near Carrot Creek.
Several searches have been conducted over the last year; however few clues have been uncovered.
"It's become personal," Don Drebert, President of Search and Rescue Alberta said Saturday on the continued search for the couple. "We would like to obviously bring resolution for the family [and] bring them closure."
The reach of the tragic story was demonstrated as many strangers to the family attended the service.
"He said ‘I've never met you or your family'," Nicole Walshe said as she recounted one of the many conversations she had with people attending the memorial.
"It was important for us to have this closure, they were thanking us for doing it," Walshe said. "That made it all worthwhile, it's important, it's past our family. It goes broader than that."
The response helped strengthen the McCann family's resolve, and after the moment of recollection, the search will continue.
"I just want people to know that by no means is this the end of it," Bret McCann said Saturday. "We are going to find out what happened to my parents for sure."
"Tomorrow we will approach it with renewed vigour."
RCMP only have one person of interest in the case, Travis Vader, and he is currently behind bars on separate charges.
A $60,000 reward is still available for anyone who shares information regarding the couple's whereabouts with RCMP.
With files from Kevin Armstrong