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Debris found in search for missing travellers to Lutselk'e

Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Trenton could not say what the debris was or where it was found, but did say it prompted RCMP to send out a helicopter.

Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Trenton officials say the finding prompted RCMP to send a helicopter

Samuel Boucher, 65, and Cammy Boucher, 23, are two of three overdue travellers believed to have been on their way from Detah to Lutselk'e Monday evening. (Facebook)

The Royal Canadian Air Force says debris has been found in the search for three missing travellers enroute to Lutselk'e.

The air force has been involved in the search for Samuel and Cammy Boucher and another unidentified person who were reported missing Tuesday.

Capt. Mathew Strong with Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Trenton said he got a report at 12:35 p.m. Thursday that debris had been found.

Strong could not confirm what or where the debris was, but he said the finding prompted RCMP to dispatch a helicopter.

The trio is believed to have left Detah, N.W.T. at around 10:30 p.m. Monday. Police said they were travelling on a black two-seater snowmobile that was towing two toboggans. Lutselk'e is approximately 184 kilometres east of Detah.

'Area of interest'

In a press release sent out Friday afternoon, RCMP, who are leading the search, said they had identified an "area of interest" on Great Slave Lake in their search for the missing travellers.

They offered no details about where exactly the area is, or why it is "of interest."

The RCMP said they continue to look for the missing people, and warn the public not to attempt their own searches.

"We understand the desire to bring these travellers home, but due to the deteriorating ice conditions, we stress that no one should venture out on the ice," Staff Sgt. Yannick Hamel said in the press release.

Chief Darryl Marlowe of Lutsel K'e Dene First Nation says his community is on edge as it waits for news from searchers about three people who went missing this week while travelling to Lutselk'e. (Lawrence Nayally)

'One of the best navigators of the East Arm'

Chief Darryl Marlowe of Lutsel K'e Dene First Nation said Samuel Boucher is experienced on the land.

"He's probably one of the best navigators of the East Arm [of Great Slave Lake]," Marlowe said on Friday. "He grew up in the bush, out on the trap line, and he knows how to navigate the land."

Yellowknife RCMP say the search continues for three overdue travellers said to be enroute from Detah to Lutselk'e. Lutselk'e is approximately 184 kilometres east of Detah. (Google)

Marlowe said Samuel is his uncle and a respected elder in Lutselk'e.

He described Samuel as outgoing, friendly and a "very traditional person."

"He's always out there every other day checking his fishnets," said Marlowe. "People come to see him to get fresh fish from the lake."

In 2011, a man named Sam Boucher went missing while he was helping to search for two other men who hadn't returned from the bush near Lutselk'e.

All three were ultimately found.

Boucher had been forced to walk after the snowmobile he was using drove into open water.

Marlowe said Cammy, 23, has been living with her mother in Yellowknife, but that she often visits Lutselk'e.

"She's really kindhearted, a kindhearted young individual. Really outgoing as well," said Marlowe.

The chief said the community is on edge as they wait for updates from searchers.

"There's just that sense of urgency to hear good news," he said. "We're just keeping positive thoughts right now and we're really just hoping that they're found safe."

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