Couple missing for days in Kootenay backcountry found after stomping ‘HELP’ into snow

The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, after Gibbons reported her missing. (RCMP handout)The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, after Gibbons reported her missing. (RCMP handout)
The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, after Gibbons reported her missing. (RCMP handout)The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, after Gibbons reported her missing. (RCMP handout)
The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, after Gibbons reported her missing. (RCMP handout)The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, after Gibbons reported her missing. (RCMP handout)

The word “HELP” etched in large letters in the snow was what led rescuers to finding a man and woman safe and sound after being stranded for several days in a remote area of the Rocky Mountains this week.

The search for Catherine Gibbons, 22, and Damon Brodeur, 24, began Wednesday when Gibbons’ family reported her missing after not hearing from her for five days. It was believed the two were camping in the backcountry, police said in a news release Thursday.

On Thursday, as police conducted aerial search with local rescue crews, investigators spotted Gibbons car stuck in an ice-filled creek along a forest service road, just northeast of Cranbrook.

Near the car, investigators could see a bright orange tarp, as well as the word “HELP” stamped into the snow. To the left of the car, a large arrow was also marked into the snow, leading searchers to a cabin where the pair, along with their dog, had taken shelter for days.

“All were in good spirits,” police said, and the Gibbons and Brodeur were taken to a nearby hospital for a full medical assessment out of precaution.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Brandon Hobbs (turquoise shirt), brother of missing Abbotsford man Adam Hobbs, gathers with other family and friends to distribute posters in Chilliwack on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Search efforts expand to Chilliwack and beyond for missing Abbotsford man

Family, friends put up posters in Chilliwack, Agassiz, Hope for missing 22-year-old Adam Hobbs

poster
Drop-in Covid vaccine clinic in Mission June 17-18

Neighbourhood clinics complement appointment-based clinics currently operating in Mission

Stock photo by LEEROY Agency from Pixabay
Drop-in vaccination clinics slated in Abbotsford for construction workers

Among three sites in Lower Mainland holding no-appointment clinics in June and July

A CH-149 Cormorant from 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron out of CFB Comox on a training exercise in Chilliwack on June 16, 2021. (William Snow photo)
VIDEO: Military search and rescue training in Chilliwack Wednesday

CH-149 Cormorant and CC-115 Buffalo from CFB Comox participated in downed aircraft rescue simulation

(Black Press Media files)
Get ready for mosquito season

Fraser Valley Regionsl District has already taken measures to curb the number of mosquitos

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Helen Austin performing with Trent Freeman at the 2018 Vancouver Island MusicFest. Austin is one of the many performers listed for the 2021 event.
Vancouver Island MusicFest goes virtual for 2021

Black Press to stream 25 hours of programming July 9-11

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

B.C. Premier John Horgan leaves his office for a news conference in the legislature rose garden, June 3, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. premier roasted for office budget, taxing COVID-19 benefits

Youth addiction law that triggered election hasn’t appeared

Most Read