Search continues for toddler last seen near Alberta river
The desperate search for a toddler who went missing near a river in western Alberta continued Sunday.
“People are remaining positive,” Const. Melanie McIntosh of the Grande Prairie RCMP told CTV Edmonton. “They’re working really hard to find this little one.”
The two-year-old from Grande Prairie, who has been identified only as Myles, was last seen by his family Friday around 5 p.m. near the Canfor Bridge, which spans the Wapiti River in the Municipal District of Greenview.
Since the toddler went missing, the RCMP’s technical rescue crew has been scouring the area by helicopter, all-terrain vehicle and boat every day from the early morning until nightfall.
Police are asking the public to stay out of the area as they search for the child. Those wanting to help have been delivering food and water to search crews while others, like local mother Arlene de Heus, have been leaving stuffed animals outside their homes to show support for the child’s family.
“I wanted to do something to show the family that our community is rallying behind them,” de Heus told CTV Edmonton. “He's out there, worried, scared. Wherever he is, every boy and every child needs a teddy bear to keep him safe.”
De Heus’s sympathetic gesture has caught on, with multiple homes in and around Grande Prairie now adorned with stuffed animals.
According to the RCMP, clear weather improved search conditions Sunday.
“The riverbank is very steep and yesterday was very wet and slippery and muddy (and) our air support is hindered in bad conditions,” McIntosh said. “So today we have the best working conditions… Hopefully the water levels will decrease in the river as well.”
It remains unclear exactly how the toddler went missing. For now, though, the focus is finding him.
With a report from CTV Edmonton’s Angela Jung and files from The Canadian Press