After months of searching for a missing Whistler man have yielded no results, the RCMP are appealing to the public for tips.
Willy Lynskey, 21, was initially reported missing by his family on Apr. 14 of this year. A student at BCIT at the time, an investigation was quickly launched by the Vancouver Police. They were able to trace his steps; video showed Willy boarding a Greyhound bus to Edmonton alone around 7 p.m. on April 12. He checked into Century Casino and Hotel the following day.
There was also a cellphone ping around Calgary on April 14. That was enough for Vancouver police to deem him safe and close their investigation. But the Lynskey family has still not heard from Willy.
"They labelled him as a young adult distancing himself from family and friends — which they have the right to do — and that they could no longer monitor him under the Privacy Act," said mother Heather Lynskey. "Which was very shocking to me, because he was still missing. Nobody had talked to him... it's certainly out of character."
His family last saw Willy on the weekend of April 1, and had dinner with him on consecutive nights to celebrate his birthday. He confirmed he was going to join them at a family function over the Easter Weekend, which was planned for days after he boarded the bus to Edmonton.
"He was talking, he was happy, he was telling stories, he didn't give any signs of anything... nothing that would indicate whatever it is that he's going through, said Lynskey.
Since then, the Lynskeys have received no word from their son. His social media and bank accounts haven't been active, and none of his friends have heard from him either. The Whistler RCMP opened its own missing persons file in May.
"All of our efforts to confirm his well-being since that point have been negative," said Whistler RCMP Staff Sgt. Paul Hayes. "We can't say if he's in Edmonton, Calgary or if he's back in British Columbia, so we are looking for an appeal of help for anybody who has information they can share about Mr. Lynskey and his whereabouts since April of this year."
Over the past eight months, the Lynskeys haven't stopped looking. They've hired a private investigator to help find him, and possibly understand the motivations behind why Willy left. The family has also shared a post around Facebook that led to some reported sightings in the interior, but a trip to Kamloops to find Willy yielded no results.
"We need the public help now. He went from Vancouver to Edmonton, somebody was on the bus next to him. Somebody saw him somewhere," said Lynskey.
"How as a family are we supposed to deal with this? We can't function. We can't do anything else. We can't move on from anything other than looking for my son," she added.
The above photo shows Willy as he last appeared. Be advised that his appearance may have changed over the last few months, whether in weight, hairstyle or other.
If you have any information about the disappearance of Willy Lynskey, call the general line at Whistler RCMP (604-932-3044).