VIDEO: ‘She is a tough cookie,’ says husband of found B.C. dog walker

After close to 40 hours of searching, crews finally found dog walker Annette Poitras alive and mostly unhurt deep within the Coquitlam watershed late Wednesday morning.

The 56-year-old had gone missing on Monday afternoon while walking Chloe, her border collie, Roxy, a young boxer and Bubba, a 13-year-old beagle-pug cross.

Her husband, Marcel Poitras, had called police when his wife didn’t return home. The local search and rescue crews headed into the trails of Burke and Eagle mountains to try and track her down.

More than 300 searchers, including teams from all over B.C. and the Coquitlam RCMP’s missing persons unit, combed thousands of trails north of the Westwood Plateau.

Two helicopters helped from above, but it was a ground crew that finally heard faint cries for help, and then loud barking, in a marshy basin between Cypress and Burke mountains.

“This is well outside the normal trail system in the Westwood Plateau,” said RCMP Cpl. Michael McLaughlin.

Bone-weary search crews did not comment on Annette’s exact condition, but McLaughlin said she suffered minor injuries that prevented her from climbing out of the basin she had slipped into.

“It looks like she’s going to make a full recovery,” he said.

A small crowd of a dozen or so neighbours, friends and family, including Mayor Richard Stewart, gathered to watch a helicopter bring Annette to safety.

Marcel broke into smiles and laughter as his wife was transferred into the ambulance.

“I said this morning she was a tough cookie,” said Marcel. “I knew.”

The Poitrases were taken to Royal Columbian Hospital, just as the three dogs were airlifted out of the woods.

Tina Presley, a friend of Annette’s, and Bubba’s owner, was elated.

“This woman, this incredible woman and these dogs,” she said. “You have no idea how much this means to all of us.”

Roxy’s owner, Janet Kilberg, expressed her gratitude for the search and rescue crews.

“I hope she can get back out walking real soon because all the dogs love her,” Kilberg said. “I’m just so glad and thankful for everyone.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Search and rescue crews descend with Annette Poitras, the Coquitlam dog walker they just rescued from the woods. (Katya Slepian/Black Press)
Ambulances wait for Annette Poitras. (Katya Slepian/Black Press)
Crews ready a search and rescue helicopter before heading out to save Annette Poitras. (Katya Slepian/Black Press)
Search and rescue crews descend with Annette Poitras, the Coquitlam dog walker they just rescued from the woods. (Katya Slepian/Black Press)
Search and rescue crews descend the rescued dogs. (Katya Slepian/Black Press)
Search crews rescued Bubba, a 13-year-old ‘puggle.’ (Katya Slepian/Black Press)
Anette Poitras was found after going missing in the Westwood plateau area in Coquitlam. (Contributed)

Just Posted

Port Hardy council has sent a second cannabis application to LCRB for consideration

Port Hardy council voted in favour to have a cannabis application moved forward to LCRB.

Port Hardy water, sewer and garbage rates may go up

Water rates would increase by 2 per cent, garbage by 2.5 per cent, and sewer by 4 per cent.

VIDEO: North Island female minor hockey jamboree a big success story

“Success is measured by the smiles on the players’ faces, not by the scoreboard.”

FOLLOW-UP: Shelley Downey speaks on her Conservative candidacy

“I anticipate requesting a leave of absence from Port McNeill council,” Downey said.

B.C. to move salmon farms out of coastal migration route

Broughton Archipelago plan set to start in spring of 2019

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

A journey through 2018’s top pop culture moments

Was there any pop culture this year? Of course there was.

‘A stronger Alberta:’ Ottawa announces $1.6B for Canada’s oil and gas sector

Price of Alberta oil plummeted so low that Alberta’s Premier said Canada was practically giving it away

Wicked weather, including heavy snow, rainfall, hammers southern B.C.

Environment Canada has posted winter storm warnings for the Coquihalla Highway, Highway 3

Caretaker jailed, must pay back money after stealing $260K from elderly B.C. couple

Antonette Dizon, now 50, had been hired to provide extra care for Henry and Helen Abfalter

Retailers feel the squeeze of their generous return policies

Technology data tracking can clamp down on fraudulent abuse

Canadians to get low-cost data-only mobile phone plans within 90 days: CRTC

Bell, Rogers and Telus will provide plans as cheap as 250MB for $15

Four per cent of Canadian women report being sexually harassed in the workplace

One per cent of men report being sexually harassed in the workplace

Stricter drunk driving laws to take effect across Canada today

It gives police officers the right to ask for a breath sample from any driver they lawfully stop

Most Read