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The family of a missing cowboy from Merritt made a public plea today for any information relating to his disappearance.
It has been over two weeks since the search for Ben Tyner, the missing ranch manager at Nicola Ranch in Merritt, began. It’s been nearly three weeks since he was last seen or heard from. His family arrived in Merritt early on in the search.
“To say that we are heartbroken is an understatement,” said Jennifer Tyner, Ben’s mother. “Our hearts are shattered and our lives have been thrown into an endless turmoil. We feel as if we are only shells of the people we were before our son, Ben Tyner, went missing over two weeks ago.”
“To think that I will never again see his smile or hear his infectious laugh, never see him realize his dreams, never have him wrap his arms around me again is unthinkable. Our son loved life and touched so many people during his life.”
A massive search was undertaken in the first week, followed by several subsequent, smaller scale searches. As the investigation continues to unfold, the South East District Major Crime Unit (SED MCU) has been called to assist the Merritt RCMP with resources and expertise, so that local members can respond to the needs of community and continue the search for Tyner.
Police say the investigation includes re-interviewing witnesses, as well as locating any new potential witnesses, following up on tips and leads and potentially more searches, if new evidence warrants.
“I have difficulty finding the words to express the sadness and loss that our family is feeling,” said Ben’s brother, Jack Tyner. “When I look at what Ben accomplished during his short time here I am blown away. He touched so many lives on his way to accomplishing his dreams, that it is truly amazing.”
“I really hope that in some way he knows how loved and how special he was. The hole in our family will never be replaced,” Jack continued. “His laughter will never ring through our home again. His strong handshake, bear hug, and his deep voice are gone, and my family still has no answers; no closure. My family and I are asking for your help. If you have any information, anything that could help us find Ben, we would be forever grateful.”
Cst. Tracy Dunsmore, of the Merritt RCMP said that, although they cannot reveal all aspects of the investigation, the RCMP want to confirm that there have been no major developments or arrests at this time.
“It’s easy for rumors and theories to take place as the search continues,” said Dunsmore.
The RCMP is asking anyone who may have seen Ben Tyner during the weekend of January 26 and 27 or a truck and trailer that may have transported him to the Swakum Mountain or OK Forest Service Road off Mamit Lake Road, to contact the SED MCU tip line at 1-877-987-8477.