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OPP statement on identification of Trout Lake remains

OPP NEWS RELEASE ************************* OPP identify human remains of two people who went missing 50 years ago NORTH BAY, ON, January 15 - At a news conference today, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) announced the identity of two people whose r


************************* OPP identify human remains of two people who went missing 50 years ago NORTH BAY, ON, January 15 - At a news conference today, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) announced the identity of two people whose remains they found in Trout Lake just east of North Bay in October (2006), both of whom went missing from their Trout Lake cottage 50 years ago. The remains have been identified as those of Allan and Margaret Campbell, a North Bay couple who had been missing since May 29, 1956. The OPP located the remains on October 20, 2006 at the bottom of Trout Lake near Rolph Island, approximately 15 feet away from their boat, which was submerged in approximately 85 feet of water. Extensive land, marine, shoreline contour and underwater searches were conducted following the Campbells' 1956 disappearance, however with depths of over 200 feet in some areas of Trout Lake, it wasn't until the OPP were able to utilize side scanning sonar technology in October, that they were able to locate the Campbells' remains and their boat. After the side scanning sonar detected objects at the bottom of the lake, the OPP Underwater Search and Recovery Unit (USRU) conducted a dive and located what was believed to be a boat and motor and possible human remains.

The dive clearly revealed that the boat and motor matched the description of the boat the Campbells owned at the time of their disappearance, and the USRU subsequently recovered the remains through a series of dives conducted over a two-day period between October 20-22, 2006. Over the past 50 years, the OPP received a number of leads from people who alleged that foul play was a factor in the deaths of Allan Campbell and his wife Margaret, all of which were unfounded. Since the recovery of the Campbells' remains last October, the OPP's investigation has revealed that there is no evidence of foul play, and that all evidence supports the belief that this boating incident resulted in the accidental drowning of Allan and Margaret Campbell on May 29, 1956.

Backgrounder: Disappearance - On May 29, 1956, Allan and Margaret Campbell left their Lake Heights Road, North Bay residence for their cottage on the southeast side of Trout Lake.

- They had indicated to their 10 year-old daughter Joan Mable that they would be home by 6:00 that evening, but did not return that day.

- When they had still not returned home by the morning of May 30, 1956, family members checked the cottage for their whereabouts.

- The family car was found parked in the usual location at the cottage, however Allan and Margaret Campbell were nowhere to be found.

- Their green 15-foot fiberglass boat with a blue five-horsepower Elto outboard motor were also missing from the cottage.

- The police were notified and officers from the North Bay OPP detachment searched the area.

- The Campbells, their boat and their family dog were never located.

Backgrounder: The Campbells

- After their marriage, Allan and Margaret Campbell moved regularly and Allan worked various types of jobs.

- In 1948, the Campbells sold the gas station they owned in Trout Creek, and moved to North Bay where Allan took a job with H.E. Brown Supply Company.

- In (approximately) 1950, The Campbells purchased a gas station and confectionary store on Trout Lake Road in North Bay.

- The family lived in the living quarters above the confectionary; Margaret operated the confectionary and Allan operated the service station.

- The investigation revealed that Allan Campbell purchased a 15-fiit fiberglass boat in 1953 or 1954.

- In 1954, the Campbells purchased a cottage on Trout Lake, where the family spent much of their leisure time.

- In 1956, the Campbells sold their Trout Lake Road gas station business and purchased a new home on Lake Heights Road in North Bay; Allan Campbell subsequently began employment with Beaucage Mines in the North Bay area.

- That same year, two of the Campbells' daughters (Shirley and Florence) were married and also living in North Bay; their other two daughters (June Joyce and Joan Mable) were still living at home with their parents.

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