It’s been a year since Laureen Fabian went for her daily walk and disappeared.
Despite an extensive ground search by Houston Search and Rescue supplemented with search and rescue volunteers from nearby communities and aided by a RCMP helicopter and an aircraft, no trace has ever been found of Fabian, 69 at the time of her disappearance Oct. 28, 2019.
“There’s been nothing,” daughter Caterina Andrews said last week.
Now living in the Lower Mainland, Andrews and several cousins are in Houston this week to mark the first anniversary of the disappearance.
“We’re going to the last place where her footprints were found,” she said of a small gathering.
Andrews will be wearing a coat that belonged to her mother, a part of a collection of personal effects she now has.
It helps her remember her mother.
With a year having gone by, Andrews says she is coping as best she can given that she has no closure.
“It comes and goes. Comes and goes. It would be better if we knew something but we don’t know if that’s ever going to happen,” Andrews adds.
In the immediate days following Fabian’s disappearance, several theories surfaced as to what may have happened.
RCMP investigators issued a call for any dash cam footage that may have been taken along the Buck Flats Road area where Fabian took her daily walks, thinking that she may have simply left the area.
Andrews herself wonders if an explanation rests within her mother’s walking route.
“It’s hard to say. She could have just fallen into the creek there,” she said in adding the weather was bad at the time.
Sgt. Mark Smaill of the Houston RCMP detachment remembers the extensive effort put in by Houston Search and Rescue and search and rescue volunteers from other communities.
“They put in some very long hours. Late into the night. First thing in the morning. They went at it hard,” he said. “For them it was an unsettling feeling that they couldn’t locate the person, unfortunately. They did an amazing job.”
Search managers especially got very little sleep in mapping the area and laying out grid patterns to be gone over, something aided by searchers having an identified area and route, Smaill said.
“It was not a large area, but the terrain was quite difficult,” he added.
Andrews also said she received social media reports that her mother was seen far afield of Houston but that nothing ever became of those reports.
Posters with her mom’s photo and an appeal for information were placed on public bulletin boards and other places along major highway routes. That photo of Fabian was of her hair being dyed red but in the recent times before her disppearance, she had reverted to her more natural graying colour.
Andrews did say she attempted to interest a Vancouver television station in hopes a broadcast story would result in information that would lead to knowing what happened to her mother, noting that stories had been done on other people who had gone missing.
“But no one ever got back to me,” she said.
When the official search for Fabian ended Nov. 2, 2019, Fabian’s file was transferred from the Houston RCMP detachment to the major crime unit at the North District headquarters for the RCMP in Prince George and landed on the desk of Sgt. Matt Mcleod.
RCMP investigators are renewing their request for any information leading to what may have happened to Houston resident Laureen Fabian who disappeared Oct. 28, 2019 when she went for a walk and never returned.
“Police are appealing to anyone who may have information that could help bring a resolution to this investigation to contact their local RCMP,” RCMP Corporal Madonna Saunderson said in a statement released this morning.
“We hope that they will call and provide what could be vital information,” she said.
Investigators are considering what Saunderson called all options regarding Fabian’s disappearance.
“Numerous avenues of investigation have been pursued and investigators have followed up on all information received, however Laureen has not been found,” Saunderson’s release added.
“There was no response to the dash cam request therefore it did not lead to any subsequent investigative avenues. Any tips received from the public were followed up on,” she said.
The renewed call for information has been distributed widely and has been posted on social media sites and outlets.
DNA is now on file for comparison purposes if needed and the BC Coroners service has a database in case human remains are found in B.C., said Saunderson.
In the meantime, Andrews waits for any kind of information that will lead to understanding what happened to her mother.
“In a small town like Houston, someone knows something,” she said.
If you have any information about Laureen or where she might be, please contact the Houston RCMP at (250) 845-2204 or Crime Stoppers at 1(800)222-8477.