Missing B.C. men were on dream voyage from Panama

Last seen on Vancouver Island, wife of one man says it’s now a ‘heartbreaking’ disappearance

The wife of one of two missing British Columbia sailors says her husband’s dream voyage has become a nightmare as days pass without word from him.

Leah Bliss said her friends, and psychics, are telling her to hold onto the thread of hope that her husband, Daniel Archibald, is somewhere safe, but it’s been almost a month since he disappeared.

She said she’s had to prepare their two daughters, nine and five years old, for the worst.

“It’s really difficult explaining to children a situation like this,” said Bliss. “It’s even difficult for adults to grasp the concept of missing. When I told (my daughters) I tried to be as honest as possible. I explained he was missing but it didn’t look good.”

The RCMP said the disappearance of Archibald and Ryan Daley is considered suspicious and is under investigation by the Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit.

READ MORE: SAR teams join search for missing men last seen in Ucluelet

Police said Archibald, 37, and Daley, 43, were last seen May 16 walking from the harbour dock area in Ucluelet on the West Coast of Vancouver Island. The two men can be seen on video carrying their backpacks and duffel bags.

The pair had arrived in Ucluelet on May 13 after a lengthy voyage from Panama on board a sailboat.

Ucluelet dockmaster Kevin Cortes, who was the last person to see them on May 16, said they had paid for one month of moorage for the boat.

Cortes said Archibald and Daley appeared healthy but tired after a long trip, adding he noticed nothing unusual about them during the three days they spent in Ucluelet.

RCMP Cpl. Madonna Saunderson said Wednesday police had no new details to report but an active investigation continues.

Bliss said she and friends and relatives were on their way back to Vancouver Island Wednesday from where the family lives in Squamish, B.C., to search the many logging roads and ravines along the winding 100-kilometre stretch of the Pacific Rim Highway between Port Alberni and Ucluelet.

READ MORE: Police following up on “multiple tips” for missing Vancouver Island men

“We have so many psychics telling us that Dan is still alive somewhere,” she said. “You don’t know what to believe. We hope he’s alive out there somewhere but I have no sign of that.”

Bliss said her husband sounded in good spirits and nothing seemed out of the ordinary in her most recent phone conversations with him.

“Even when I last spoke to him, he seemed really well rested and happy. Just excited,” she said. “I have no idea what’s gone on. That’s just really trying to piece the puzzle together.”

Bliss said Archibald and Daley were looking for a ride from Ucluelet to Jordan River, located by car about 350 kilometres south. Daley lived at Jordan River.

“Who did they get a ride with? That’s the real question,” she said. “That’s where it ends.”

Bliss said her husband was a life-long sailor and the voyage from Panama to the West Coast was a great adventure for him. She said he bought the vessel two years ago in hopes of using it to start a sailing and charter business in B.C.

“He’s never done a long trip like that,” said Bliss. “For him it was just a dream to have that time to be able to sail it back up here. The plan was to have it fixed up there for a reasonable rate and bring it back up.”

She described her husband as a trusting person who did not create enemies.

“He was a soft-spoken, kind-hearted, considerate person who never really pushed anybody’s buttons or anything,” said Bliss. “He’s just a good guy. He’s a hippie. It’s hard to imagine anybody would want to do anything to these guys.”

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

71-year-old woodstave penstocks to be removed from Campbell River hydro system

They were supposed to last about 40 years. Instead, they lasted about… Continue reading

Inversion traps fog over B.C. south coast

Foggy conditions to persist until Wednesday morning

Another weekend of wins for the Campbell River Storm

Team remains on top of league following victories over Nanaimo and Saanich

Police service dog rescues distraught, hypothermic Campbell River man during snowstorm

RCMP police service dog Gator located a distraught man who had wandered… Continue reading

GoFundMe creator responds to Cortes Island director’s critics

Crowdfunding page is subject of court petition from 13 people

Giant rotating ice disk forms in Maine river

Ice disk that is roughly 100 yards wide has formed in the Presumpscot River

Razor burn: Gillette ad stirs online uproar

A Gillette ad for men invoking the #MeToo movement is sparking intense online backlash

Feds poised to bolster RCMP accountability with external committee

Long-anticipated move is the latest attempt at rebuilding the force following years of sagging morale

Canada needs a digital ID system, bankers association says

The Department of Finance last week officially launched its public consultation on the merits of open banking

Second fatal crash occurs in Alberni Valley

Traffic on Highway 4 is being re-routed as investigators are en route

Indigenous energy summit includes session on pipeline ownership options

Steven Saddleback of the Indian Resource Council says a session will feature presentations on financing models

Japanese grand champion Kisenosato retires from sumo

The 32-year-old Kisenosato was the first Japanese-born wrestler in 19 years to gain promotion to sumo’s highest rank

UPDATE: Accused B.C. high school killer found fit to stand trial

Gabriel Klein is accused in the 2016 stabbing death of Letisha Reimer at Abbotsford Senior Secondary

Right-wing, neo-Nazi, white supremacist groups an increasing concern: Goodale

Ten people died in April 2018 when Alek Minassian allegedly drove a rental van down the busy stretch in Toronto

Most Read