A 20 year-old man hitchhiking in Canada mysteriously disappears.
Charles Horvath answered to no one. In the spring of 1989, the Britton was hitchhiking his way across British Columbia, Canada. He planned to fly to Hong Kong in a few months to celebrate his 21st birthday with his mother, Denise. But Denise said that before she could make final arrangements for the trip, Charles disappeared.
Denise flew from England to the town of Kelowna, Canada, to search for Charles. She put up flyers all over town and soon heard from a woman named Joanne Zebroff:
The last time Charles dropped by the apartment to visit Joanne, he arrived unexpectedly. Joanne’s brother was in town for a special family reunion. Joanne said that she politely refused Charles’ request to visit:
Denise learned that while he was in Kelowna, Charles stayed at a campground in a rough part of town:
According to Denise, the campground manager said that Charles left quickly, leaving his tent and all his possessions:
Sgt. Gary Tidsbury of Royal Canadian Mounted Police admitted the local response was inappropriate:
One night when Denise got back to the hotel, she found a chilling note. It read:
Local divers volunteered to look for the body of Charles Horvath. They found nothing.
Then Denise received a second note saying they were looking on the wrong side of the bridge. According to Denise, the next day she got word that divers had indeed found a body:
The dead man was identified as a 64-year old Kelowna resident, a probable suicide. Once again it seemed that Charles might be alive. Then a man named Gino Bourdin came forward, claiming to have seen Charles just before he disappeared:
Gino last saw Charles during an all-night party at the campground. The next morning, Gino woke up to find Charles gone and his things left behind. What disturbed Denise most was that her son’s cache of personal photographs was not taken:
Another new twist came when police contacted Charles’s relatives in eastern Canada.
According to Sgt. Tidsbury:
Denise found the story difficult to accept:
Many years have passed without a word from Charles, but police have received tips from hundreds of people claiming to have seen him. Be it good news or bad, Denise Allan just wants to know what happened to her son: