Two years after the disappearance of 20-year-old Ryan Shtuka in Sun Peaks, the case is as much a mystery as the day he went missing.
Monday marked 24 months since the Beaumont, Alta., man vanished without a trace from a house party on Burfield Drive on the cold, snowy night of Feb. 17, 2018.
His parents, Heather and Scott Shtuka, have scoured the resort community, constantly checking the area where their son was last seen, with thousands of volunteers, search dogs, drones and helicopters having combed through the area.
“But that’s not to say that we didn’t miss something, so we’re going to continue looking,” Scott told KTW.
The parents believe their son’s body is still somewhere in Sun Peaks.
“It’s hard,” Scott said.
“The feeling is you’ve done so much and you haven’t found any evidence of anything like a hat or shoes or anything like that, so it’s tough that way.”
Scott said they will continue to search at Sun Peaks and anywhere else, should a solid tip come in.
The family has conducted about seven searches in Sun Peaks in the past year and meet regularly with the RCMP whenever they make the trip, but police have no new information to suggest any break in the case.
Kamloops RCMP Cpl. Jodi Shelkie said the disappearance is still being investigated as Mounties continue to receive and follow up on tips from the public.
Asked if police have learned anything new in the past year that can’t be released publicly, Shelkie said she wouldn’t be able to confirm or deny any such details.
Shelkie said police still have no evidence suggesting Ryan Shtuka left Sun Peaks.
She also said police have not ruled out criminality in the disappearance as they have no evidence to suggest what happened to Ryan the night he went missing.
“Because we don’t know what happened to Ryan, we have to be open to any avenue that future evidence may direct us to,” Shelkie told KTW via email.
Heather and Scott will continue searching in Sun Peaks this spring when the record amount of snowfall has receded.
The Shtukas have also been working with the Wings of Mercy — a non-profit group that helps families search for missing loved ones — and in the spring will use software to analyze footage taken of the area last summer.
Ryan is white, stands six feet tall, weighs 180 pounds and has blond hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing dark jeans, a grey and white shirt, blue coat and burgundy ball cap.
Those with information are asked to call Kamloops RCMP at 250-828-3000 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
by Michael Potestio