Body at Mount Washington believed to be that of missing Saanich woman

A body found at the base of Mount Washington near the car of missing Saanich woman Shirley Burstall is believed to be her body.

A BODY FOUND Wednesday at the base of Mount Washington is believed to be that of missing Saanich woman Shirley Burstall.

A BODY FOUND Wednesday at the base of Mount Washington is believed to be that of missing Saanich woman Shirley Burstall.

A body found Wednesday evening by Comox Valley RCMP at the base of Mount Washington near the car of missing Saanich woman Shirley Burstall is believed to be her body.RCMP Staff Sgt. Andrew Isles said around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, RCMP were temporarily shutting down their command post before resuming the search for the 75-year-old, when their police dog picked up a scent. That led to the discovery of an elderly woman about a kilometre from where her car was located.Isles confirmed Thursday the case is now in the hands of the coroner.”We got a lot of information after talking with the family (Wednesday night) and have some information about the jewelry (Burstall) was wearing and some personal items she had on her,” he said. “We’re pretty certain, as much as we can be without a formal autopsy, that it is Ms. Burstall.”Burstall’s car was found April 23 in the early-afternoon hours afternoon on a road off of the Strathcona Parkway leading to Mount Washington, prompting an extensive search for the woman, who was last seen April 5 at a Ladysmith gas station. She had spent the previous five days in Chemainus. Tuesday, Paul Berry, manager/president of the Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue team, said a team of searchers scoured ground and water to determine Burstall’s direction of travel.”It is not uncharacteristic for her to hike, but it’s not the sort of area she would have hiked in,” he said. Burstall was described as an active hiker and traveller, and very fit for her age. Her family said she had decided to get away for a few days, and mentioned to her daughter she may head to Tofino.Saanich Police confirm the 2002 Mazda Protégé had been on the logging road for some time. They added the car was locked and Burstall’s personal belongings were found locked in the trunk. There were no obvious signs of anything suspicious to investigators.Comox Valley RCMP added Wednesday their initial investigation indicated no foul play, yet the investigation is ongoing.Isles said the area where the body was discovered was part of the search area, although difficult terrain made searching difficult.He added it is too early to tell how long the body may have been in the woods.”Our investigators have been in contact with the Saanich police who have been in contact with the Burstall family in Victoria. Again, we’re not able to make a positive identification, but wanted to alert them that we had found a woman that could possibly be their loved one,” he said.photos@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cumberland Brewery is looking to expand its patio space temporarily for the summer. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Cumberland Brewery looks for temporary patio expansion

Move would allow business to spread customers outside in summer months

School District 71’s final budget for this school year showed more revenue from distance learning students but less from traditional classroom registration. Record file photo
Comox Valley Schools’ budget grant almost $5.5 million higher than planned

Increase came from a boost in distributed learning rather traditional registration

A&W on Ryan Road confirmed a positive case of COVID-19 at their restaurant and temporarily shut its doors. Google Maps photo
Courtenay restaurant temporarily closed due to COVID-19 exposure

It’s the latest business in the Valley to be affected by the virus

The CSRHD board moved closer to passing a budget with a $4.4 million cut to the tax requisition. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Comox Strathcona hospital district moves on budget with tax cut

At $12.6 million, budget requisition represents drop of $4.4 million for current year

Courtenay councillor Will Cole-Hamilton, standing at right, sits on steering committees of two organizations that are tackling the problem of greenhouse gas emissions. File photo
Courtenay councillor leads campaign to reduce building-sector GHG emissions

Courtenay councillor Will Cole-Hamilton wants local governments to carry a little more… Continue reading

Dr. Bonnie Henry leaves the podium after talking about the next steps in B.C.’s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
COVID: 589 new cases in B.C., and 7 new deaths

No new outbreaks being reported Feb. 26

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The first of 11 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft's have arrived in Abbotsford. Conair Group Inc. will soon transform them into firefighting airtankers. (Submitted)
Abbotsford’s Conair begins airtanker transformation

Aerial firefighting company creating Q400AT airtanker in advance of local forest fire season

The Canada Revenue Agency says there were 32 tax fraud convictions across the country between April 2019 and March 2020. (Pixabay)
Vancouver man sentenced to 29 months, fined $645K for tax evasion, forgery

Michael Sholz reportedly forged documents to support ineligible tax credits linked to homeownership

Then-Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson looks on as MLA Shirley Bond answers questions during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria. (Chad Hipolito / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
B.C. Liberal party to choose next leader in February 2022

Candidates have until Nov. 30 to declare whether they are running

After nearly 10 months of investigations, Mounties have made an arrest in the tripping of an elderly woman in Burnaby this past April. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Mounties charge suspect for tripping elderly woman near Metrotown in April

32-year-old Hayun Song is accused of causing bodily harm to an 84-year-old using her walker

British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives to view the Murals of Gratitude exhibition in Vancouver, on Friday, July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Death threats mount against Dr. Bonnie Henry, sparking condemnation from Horgan, Dix

Henry has become a staple on televisions in homes across British Columbia since January 2020

Several BC Ferries sailings are cancelled Friday due to adverse weather. (Black Press Media File)
All B.C. Ferries sailings cancelled due to winds, adverse weather

Adverse weather causes cancellations across several BC Ferries routes

Bryan Adams with his mom, Jane Adams Clark, at Lions Gate Hospital. (Bryan Adams)
Bryan Adams gives shout out to North Shore hospital

The singer’s mom was in Lions Gate Hospital for care

Most Read