Sad end­ing to search for Andrew Lush

Body of Bay Roberts man re­cov­ered by searchers on Fri­day

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

The search for a miss­ing Bay Roberts man ended early af­ter­noon on Fri­day, Feb. 21, and the out­come was a sad one.

Sgt. Greg Hicks of the Trin­ity Con­cep­tion RCMP con­firmed that at 12:30 p.m., mem­bers of Avalon North Wolver­ines search and res­cue lo­cated the body of 37year-old Andrew Lush.

The Wolver­ines, us­ing a fast-res­cue craft, lo­cated Lush in a body of wa­ter be­hind the Mariner lounge on Wa­ter Street in Bay Roberts.

The re­cov­ery, which took a cou­ple of hours, ended an ex­haus­tive week­long search.

Lush was last seen around 1 a.m. on Feb. 15 at Kelly’s Land­ing on Wa­ter Street in the com­mu­nity.

Ac­cord­ing to Andrew’s mother, Betty Lush, Kelly’s Land­ing was the third stop for Andrew in a night of drink­ing that also in­cluded stops at two other Bay Roberts bars — The Mariner and Coach House.

“It’s a strange thing that hap­pened to him,” Betty com­mented Fri­day morn­ing, just hours be­fore her son’s body was re­cov­ered. At the time, she was still hold­ing out hope that he would be found alive.

His body was found in an area of wa­ter that was not avail­able to searchers dur­ing the ini­tial search due to ice buildup.

How­ever, a change in weather pat­terns cleared the ice from the area in re­cent days.

Hicks said the RCMP in­ves­ti­ga­tion is not fin­ished.

“There is an au­topsy be­ing done to de­ter­mine cause of death,” said Hicks.

It was a heart-rend­ing week for the Lush fam­ily as they waited for an­swers about the dis­ap­pear­ance of their loved one. The search was un­der­taken by vol­un­teers with the Wolver­ines, po­lice and fam­ily mem­bers.

“It’s ter­ri­ble,” Betty Lush said.

A night of drink­ing

There has been much spec­u­la­tion as to the cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing Andrew’s de­par­ture from Kelly’s Land­ing, with many on so­cial me­dia ques­tion­ing why Lush was al­lowed to leave the es­tab­lish­ment with­out some as­sis­tance.

The bar’s owner, Donna Fowler, de­clined to com­ment when con­tacted. She had been away from her busi­ness for the past sev­eral weeks, and was not work­ing the night of Feb. 14.

How­ever, her em­ploy­ees have been in con­tact with the RCMP and have given state­ments. At­tempts to speak with em­ploy­ees who were work­ing that night were un­suc­cess­ful.

Sources say em­ploy­ees did call a taxi for Lush, but that he de­clined.

RCMP Sgt. Greg Hicks con­firmed that em­ploy­ees have co-op­er­ated with the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, but he would not com­ment on what in­for­ma­tion they have pro­vided.

Betty Lush, how­ever, be­lieves more could have been done.

“If a drunken man says no, you still get it (taxi) for him,” Betty said.

Among the re­sources brought to bear in the search was a po­lice ser­vice dog, a he­li­copter and a fast-res­cue craft op­er­ated by the Wolver­ines.

Pho­tos by Ni­cholas Mercer/The Com­pass

Two mem­bers of the Avalon North Wolver­ines search the wa­ter near the Klondyke in Bay Roberts for any sign of miss­ing Andrew Lush.

This he­li­copter on loan from fire and emer­gency ser­vices searches an area of Bay Roberts near Moor­frost for any sign of 37-year-old Andrew Lush. Lush went miss­ing early Satur­day (Feb. 15) morn­ing af­ter leav­ing a lo­cal bar.

Sub­mit­ted photo

Andrew Lush

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