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1 year later, Bella Coola family carrying burden of son who did not come home

Carl Schooner Jr. was last seen in Williams Lake on Dec. 3, 2022

As the one-year anniversary approaches for the disappearance of Bella Coola man Carl William Charlie Schooner Jr. his family still has no answers.

Schooner was reported missing on Dec. 6, 2022. He last spoke with his family over Facebook messenger on Dec. 1, 2022 from Williams Lake, where he was last seen on Dec. 3, 2022.

“He called us to check in and let us know he was OK,” his father Carl Schooner Sr. told Black Press Media. “He asked me to pick him up on Friday, but I couldn’t until Sunday. If I did he would be home now.”

Schooner Sr. said it has been tough.

To date they have received no new information from the RCMP about the case.

“It’s been hard on our younger sons. They keep talking about him and crying that he is not here. We all do that and have our moments. It gets harder every day it comes closer to the first.”

His son also really loved his grandparents on the Bella Bella side and the Bella Coola side, he added.

There is still a $10,000 reward for information about Schooner Jr.’s disappearance and the family continues to appeal to the public for information.

“Someone out there knows something. We are praying they will have it in their heart to come forward,” said Schooner Sr.’s wife Charlene. “Our family deserves to have answers.”

Things have not been the same since he disappeared, Charlene said, noting Jr.’s birthday was a difficult day.

“The seasons have rolled by and this is the time we normally do yard work and get ready for fishing season,” she said. “Each of our children have been deeply affected by his sudden disappearance, not knowing or what if?”

Charlene said they had so many plans of things to do together with Schooner Jr., such as fixing up the fishing boat.

Jr. was his dad’s right hand man for mushroom season and would accompany Charlene when she delivered them.

“We have so much hurt, anger, and frustration, and not being able to search for him has been unbearable. It’s like being stuck in one spot while the rest of the world is still moving forward,” she said.

At the time of his disappearance Schooner Jr. was described as a member of the Nuxalk and Heiltsuk First Nations, 30 years of age, weighing 161 pounds, 6’1” tall with black short hair and brown eyes.

He was last seen wearing a black hoodie.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Williams Lake RCMP at 250-392-2331, the Nuxalk Nation at 250-799-5613, Carl Schooner Sr. 778-267-4759 or to make an anonymous tip call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

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Monica Lamb-Yorski

About the Author: Monica Lamb-Yorski

A B.C. gal, I was born in Alert Bay, raised in Nelson, graduated from the University of Winnipeg, and wrote my first-ever article for the Prince Rupert Daily News.
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