The Highway of Tears is an isolated 725-kilometer stretch of Highway 16 between Prince George and Prince Rupert in British Columbia, Canada.
It has been the location of numerous murders and disappearances starting in the late 60's. The majority of the victims belong to Indiginous communities. Poverty rates in this area are high and hitchhiking is often the only way for many to travel to work, school, visit family, or seek medical treatment.
Historically, Indigenous communities have been plagued by systematic racism and negligance from authorities, which is reflected in how many of these cases were handled. It is a widely believed that these cases will never be solved, but the families of the victims that were affected, and the victims themselves, deserve to have their stories heard and remembered.
This timeline highlights the unsolved cases of The Highway of Tears.
Gloria went out one night with her brother only to disappear behind him on their way home. Read more.
Helen Claire Frost
Helen disappeared just four days before her 18th birthday. She was last seen leaving the apartment she shared with her sister, telling her sister she wanted to go for a quick walk. She never returned home.
Jean Virginia Sampare
Jean was last seen hanging out with her cousin on the railroad overpass on Highway 16. Read more.
Monica was 14 years old and was last seen walking along Highway 16 in the direction of her house. Read more.
Mary Jane Hill
Mary Jane Hill was 31 years old and a mother of three. Her body was found nude along Highway 16 and her death was deemed to be from bronchitis and bronchopneumonia as a result of manslaughter.
The Jack Family
Doreen Jack and her husband Ronald were offered jobs at a logging camp from an unknown man. The struggling family of four accepted the job and ride the man offered. The family was last seen at 1:20am that night leaving with the man in his car.
Alberta Williams was 24 years old when she was last seen leaving a bar in Prince Rupert. Read more.
Delphine Nikal was last seen leaving her group of friends one night to head home, but never made it back. Read more.
Ramona Wilson was last seen on a Saturday night leaving her house to meet friends for a night out. No one has seen her since. Read more.
Roxanne was 15 years old when she disappeared from Prince George on a long weekend in July. Read more.
15-year-old Alishia Germaine was last seen leaving a Christmas party in Prince Rupert. Read more.
Lana Patricia Derrick
Lana Patricia Derrick came home from college for Thanksgiving, but mysteriously disappeared after a night out. Read more.
Nicole was working as a tree planter and was last seen at a gas station on Highway 16, hitchhiking from Prince George to Smithers.
Kayla Rose McKay
Kayla was 13 years old when she went missing from Prince Rupert. Her body was found two days later near train tracks on a waterfront on George Hills Way.
Maragret was 89 years old when she went missing and was last seen hitchhiking on Highway 16. Police believe she may have been trying to get to Prince George, or headed into the bush in search of trapping territory.
Tamara was a young mother who disappeared after hitchhiking from Prince Rupert to Terrace in 2015. Read more.
Mary Madeline George
Mary was last seen in the evening of July 24, 2005 at 6pm. She was walking from Ospika Blvd. to the Spruceland Mall Walk-in Clinic.
Aielah Katerina Saric-Auger
Aielah Saric-Auger was 14 years old when she went missing and was last seen along Highway 16. Read more.
Bonnie Marie Joseph
Bonnie was a mother of five and was last seen hitchhiking from Vanderhoof to Prince George to attend a court date. She missed the appointment and was not heard from again. Her wallet, ID, and an uncashed cheque were found near a lake.
Emmalee Rose Mclean
Emma was 16 years old when she was last seen out with a group of people the night before she went missing. Her body was discovered along the Prince Rupert waterfront.
Immaculate "Mackie" Basil
Mackie was last seen at a party in a cabin with two men before she went missing. Read more.
Anita Florence Thorne
Anita was last seen at a gas station, her car was found the next day near Highway 16. Read more.
Frances was last seen picking mushrooms with a companion, an activity she did every year. She was raised by a trapper and an experienced back country explorer, which made this disappearance unusual. Despite search efforts she was never seen again.
Chantelle Catherine Simpson
Chantelle was 34 years old when she was reported missing after leaving her home on July 4th. Her abandoned car was found next to a gravel pit the next day. Days later her body was found in the Skeena River by a train conductor who was passing by.
Jessica Patrick Balczer
Jessica was 18 years old when she dropped off her daughter with her grandmother for the night but never returned to pick her up. Read more.
Cynthia was last seen leaving her mother's house one evening. She was never seen or heard from again. Read more.
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