Don, Rescue make the week before Christmas lively for COSAR – Keremeos Review

It was Christmas Eve and search and rescue activities in the central Okanagan were hectic.

Just before 11 p.m. on Friday, December 24, Christmas Eve, COSAR was called to assist the Kelowna RCMP in locating an elderly woman with a mental health issue in the North Glenmore area.

“The female had left her resident and was scantily clad for the outdoor conditions,” said Duane Tresnich, COSAR research manager.

Eleven members responded, including search dog Chase.

In less than 30 minutes, one of the search teams located the woman and stayed with her until the RCMP arrived. She was examined to make sure there were no physical injuries and was turned over to the RCMP.

“This was an urban search in a textbook and I’m glad the team were able to locate it so quickly,” Tresnich said. “It was a great way to start Christmas Day.”

This was COSAR’s 104th task of the year.

Tresnich would like to remind everyone that when they hit the backcountry during the Christmas holidays, don’t forget the 10 essentials at




Three years ago Andrew MacLeod and TJ Dumonceaux were rescued by search and rescue. They played forward by donating $ 15,000 to Central Okanagan Search and Rescue.

In 2018, MacLeod and Dumonceaux were testing rental snowmobiles near Revelstoke when they ran out of gas and decided to head back to the trailhead. However, the fog had enveloped the mountain and somewhere in the whiteout they missed a turn, fell into a ravine and got stuck.

As night fell and with all their change of clothes soaked from a broken water bottle, they dug a shelter in a tree and lined it with branches.

However, the sweat of digging in the snow, combined with the condensation of their breath, made everything they wore damp, so Dumonceaux set his alarm every 15 minutes so they didn’t fall asleep in the snow. hypothermia.

“I’ve never been so cold in my life,” MacLeod said.

When the sun rose around 7 a.m., it was still foggy, so the couple started to walk. It was slow in waist-deep snow and they were walking less than a minute before they had to stop to rest.

“It was so cold I couldn’t use my hands,” said Dumonceaux, a former member of the Vernon Vipers BC Hockey League team.

Dehydrated and severely hypothermic, the two men began to look for another place to spend the night when they heard snowmobiles.

Dumonceaux set off a flare and a few minutes later, members of the Revelstoke SAR snowmobile team arrived.

Hot soup, dry clothes, and a heated UTV brought the two back safely to the trailhead.

And today, through their companies, TJ & Steph Real Estate Group and The Co-Operators: Solve Insurance Service Inc., the two thank search and rescue.

They donated the money to their local volunteer organization due to the increased number of snowmobilers enjoying the Greystokes Snowmobile Zone and the huge increase in calls COSAR has faced this year.

“We are extremely grateful for the donation,” said COSAR President Brad Trites.

“This money will be used for snowmobile and avalanche training for the team. We are helping with all of the regional search and rescue groups, including Vernon, Shuswap and Revelstoke, and this donation will benefit them as much as it will benefit us.

If you want to donate to COSAR, go to and click on the Donate button.

All donations over $ 20 will receive a tax-deductible receipt.

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