Blue Line

RCMP say body of Nova Scotia teen who went missing in flood has been found

August 2, 2023  By The Canadian Press

Aug. 2, 2023, Windsor, N.S. – Police in Nova Scotia say they have recovered a body believed to be that of a 14-year-old girl who was swept nearly 100 kilometres from where she disappeared in rushing floodwaters on July 22.

RCMP told reporters Wednesday the province’s medical examiner was working to confirm the identity of the person found a day earlier by a civilian who was walking along the shoreline in Advocate Harbour, N.S., on the Bay of Fundy.

“At this time we believe (the remains) are those of the youth reported missing on July 22 as a result of the extreme flooding,” Supt. Sean Auld told a news conference.

Abraham Zebian, mayor of the Municipality of West Hants, identified the missing girl during a news conference as Terri-Lynn Keddy, and police later confirmed her age. Zebian described the girl, along with the three others who died in the flooding, as “part of our fabric, part of us.” He said his community is both mourning and relieved that all four were found after a massive search that continued over 10 days.


The area where Terri-Lynn was found is about 75 kilometres as the crow flies northwest of Brooklyn, N.S., where the victims died when the two vehicles they were travelling in were swept off the road during a torrential storm.

Last week, searchers recovered the bodies of 52-year-old Nicholas Holland, who was travelling with Terri-Lynn, and two six-year-old children – Natalie Hazel Harnish and Colton Sisco.

The storm, which dumped 250 millimetres of rain in some areas of the province, led to extensive flash flooding in several low-lying areas.

Local residents and police have said the Meander River spilled its banks and sent a torrent of water coursing across the rural road as the two vehicles drove seeking refuge in the early hours of July 22. The vehicles – a pickup truck and an SUV – were pushed into a hayfield where water reached the height of a tractor-trailer truck.

RCMP Sgt. Rob Frizzell said the distance between the hayfield and the area where Terri-Lynn’s body was found speaks to the power of the floodwaters and tides in the area. “If you follow all of the different rivers and tributaries, we are closing in on 100 kilometres away,” Frizzell said. “The sheer force of that water coming through, it’s never happened before around here.”

He said the girl was in the front passenger seat of the SUV, next to an adult driver, while Holland was in the back seat beside another adult, when the vehicle was washed off the road. The driver and the other passenger managed to escape.

At the news conference, Premier Tim Houston singled out the RCMP and other first responders, including volunteer firefighters, who helped search shorelines and flooded fields for the missing people. “We’re thankful and grateful for your efforts,” Houston said. “And we’ll never know how many lives you saved.”

“My sincere condolences to the families of the four lost souls,” he added. “You’ll be forever in our hearts and be the very sad legacy of these floods.”

Funerals were held earlier this week for the two six-year-olds who died, while a memorial gathering was held Friday for Holland.

In Brooklyn Monday, hundreds of people gathered at the local firehall to grieve Natalie, who was described as a butterfly who lit up every room. A funeral was held the following day for Colton, whose obituary describes him as an animal lover who was keen on farming, and who had pet ducks and pigs at home.

Following the news conference, the chief and deputy chief of the Brooklyn volunteer fire department told reporters that the first responders involved are exhausted after leading the response and participating in the searches.

The fire department was among the first to respond beginning on Friday night, as rain poured down and made it difficult for the fire trucks to provide rescues in some areas.

Chief Jason Cochrane said, “helping members with mental health is top priority with us right now,” while Deputy Chief Brett Tetanish said the approximately 75 members of the volunteer department are aware that more climate-related disasters could be coming.

Kody Blois, Liberal MP for Kings-Hants, said that while Wednesday was a time for grief, there is also a need to reflect on lessons learned from problems encountered during the initial response, particularly the poor cellular service in the area.

He emphasized that many residents did not receive emergency alerts, and said more support needs to be provided to volunteer fire departments coping with the impact of carrying out rescues during climate disasters.

“Think of what’s happening across the country right now, from forest fires to hurricanes … It’s incumbent on the government of Canada and provincial and territorial governments to make sure that these guys and gals have additional supports,” he said.

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