'He wouldn't give up on me': family, friends continue search for Eduardo Balaquit, missing for nearly 1 week

Nearing the one-week mark after a Winnipeg man disappeared, his family and friends say the searching continues and they're not giving up.

Son Edward Balaquit says he will never give up hope

Eduardo Balaquit's family last heard from him on Monday at around 6 p.m., his son says. (Edward Balaquit/Facebook)

Nearing the one-week mark after a Winnipeg man disappeared, his family and friends say the searching continues and they're not giving up.

Eduardo Balaquit disappeared under mysterious circumstances Monday, June 4. He was last seen near a business at 380 Keewatin St. where he was supposed to do some contract work for the janitorial business he owns, but he never made it home.

The manager at the Keewatin Street business called Balaquit's family Tuesday, saying they had found Balaquit's van with the passenger window smashed in, along with a cellphone inside the vehicle and some of his belongings on the ground.

Edward Balaquit says his dad, Eduardo Balaquit, always puts his family first. (Travis Golby/CBC)

Balaquit's son Edward said despite the length of time his father has been gone, the family is not giving up.

"I'm not going to give up, he wouldn't give up on me" said Edward, who was out searching an industrial area in Sunday morning with about two dozen volunteers.

"He wouldn't give up on anyone, even if you're not family. If I give up, I'm just going to disappoint him because he would do the same for anyone else."

The number of volunteers helping to search swells to 150-200 people nightly, he added.

"A lot are family and friends, and a lot are just people in the community, to help out, do what's right," he said.

Dozens of volunteers fan across a field west of King Edward Street and north of Jefferson Avenue on Thursday night, looking for signs of Eduardo Balaquit. (CBC)

Over the past few days, the group has employed a search method used by The Bear Clan.

Bear Clan Founder James Favel said the group uses a line pattern to search in a grid.

"You travel in unison in a grid-like pattern," he said. "It's really a very simple technique but it's very effective … but it's a lot of work."

Members of The Bear Clan are still helping the Balaquit family search for their father, he said, noting at least two members were helping Sunday morning and he expected more to help Sunday night.

Police haven't told the family anything new, said Edward, noting the police are doing their own investigation and don't want to compromise it.

"But it's just frustrating, not knowing the status of what everything is," he said. 

Const. Jay Murray said Sunday police have no new information to release.

The search will continue Sunday evening at  5:30 p.m., said Edward, and he asked anyone who wants to help to meet the group at Maples Collegiate in the parking lot.

Eduardo Balaquit is 5-foot-4, 155 pounds and has a medium build. He was wearing a black zip-up sweater, black pants and black shoes when he was last at 380 Keewatin St. between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. Monday.

Anyone with information regarding his whereabouts is asked to contact police at 204-986-6508 or Crime Stoppers at 204-786-8477.

The family also encourages anyone with information to reach out to them directly at 204-298-5171 or 204-510-5170.