After an extensive search, Wadena resident Mike Daviduk was found with his truck four or five miles from town, in the Rural Municipality of Lakeview. He was deceased.
His disappearance occurred at 2 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 1, when he left his home for a destination unknown. He was reported missing at 9:30 a.m. the next day, sparking an investigation. The RCMP began their work to determine whether the subject has merely run away, is a victim of foul play, or is in fact missing. Part of this process involves what is called a “hasty search” of places the subject would most likely be or go. At 11.30 a.m., the RCMP asked Wadena and District Search and Rescue (WADSAR) to go on standby. In the afternoon the RCMP commenced an air search.
On Wed., Feb. 3, the RCMP were continuing their investigations and search, which included the help of the Rose Valley and Foam Lake RCMP detachments. Meanwhile, members of the public were searching areas where they thought Daviduk might have gone. By Wednesday evening there was still no sign of him or his truck, and the RCMP stood WADSAR down.
On Thursday, Feb. 4, the Wadena Emergency Measures Organization (EMO) was activated at 9 a.m. The EMO is mandated and funded by the town, and WADSAR was born out of the Wadena EMO action plan 2005; as such, WADSAR and EMO have a symbiotic relationship through a memorandum of understanding. WADSAR was activated by Wadena EMO with the endorsement of the town council. As WADSAR was no longer under the RCMP standby alert and could operate independently, it was now able to help with the search.
Over Thursday and Friday, 51 members of the public, 19 members of WADSAR, RCMP from Wadena, Rose Valley and Foam Lake, two Emergency Medical Services crewmembers from Wadena, an ambulance crew from Rose Valley, and one aircraft were involved in the search. At 7 p.m. on Fri., Feb. 5, the search stood down. The WADSAR search had covered an area of approximately 10,000 square kilometres in a roughly 100-km radius from Wadena.
Daviduk’s family members and many friends and volunteers continued to drive through the countryside over the weekend and coming days, checking roads and farmyards and patrolling the streets and alleys in towns and villages as far away as Humboldt and beyond in hopes of spotting his vehicle.
On the evening of Thursday, Feb. 10, Wadena News received a report from the RCMP that Daviduk had been located with his truck in a place well within the search area. He was found in the RM of Lakeview, about four miles west of Wadena and a half-mile south.
By Andy Labdon