It will be 31 years since the Jack family, consisting of Ronald and Doreen Jack, both 26, and their kids Russell, 9 and Ryan 4, went missing on August 2, 1989.
Ronald, fondly known by family and friends as Ronnie, his wife Doreen and their two kids Russell and Ryan, were last heard from on Aug. 2, 1989. The family was headed out of town after the couple received a job offer to work on a ranch or a logging camp. Ronnie called up their extended family to let them know of their plans to take the two boys along with them and that they would be back in about 10 days.
That was the last that anyone heard from them.
The family, that was from the Cheslatta Carrier Nation, has found advocates amongst its members, fighting to find answers behind their diappearance.
Cheslatta Carrier Nation Chief Corrina Leween spoke with Lakes District News about this disappearance and said, “We are continuously holding out hope so that the family can find the family and lay them to rest and we will continue to follow up on any and all leads.”
Apart from members of the Cheslatta Carrier Nation, one of the biggest advocates for finding the truth has been Marlene Jack, sister of Doreen Jack. Ever since the day the family disappeared, she has been on top of the case, trying to find answers to her family’s strange disappearance.
“I have just received an email from the RCMP that is investigating the case. They state that they are not currently investigating the case but, they are still accepting any information, any tips that come in to them; they will collect them and at a later date look at them,” said Jack, who hasn’t been happy with the way the investigation has been conducted over the years.
“I don’t know for how long they sit on that information before actually following up on it because throughout the years they have lost vital information that could’ve led to a result in this case. They could’ve closed it a long time ago if they had actually investigated it,” she said.
Jack also said that she has been pushing the RCMP for answers and was promised by them that they were going to do age-enhanced photos of Russell and Ryan and “I am still waiting for those photos to come out”. She said that they got back to her just before the pandemic promising that those photos would be released soon.
Last year in September, the RCMP, following a tip conducted a three-day search on a property in Northern B.C. They used ground-penetrating radar and heavy equipments but the search turned up nothing to help with the case.
“I would like them to keep investigating and follow up on any and all information promptly instead of waiting to follow up. I am frustrated in a lot of ways. I am most ready to give up but I cannot because my sister matters, right? I think the fact that they were a First Nations family, the RCMP never bothered to investigate properly,” said Jack.
The couple grew up on the Southside of Francois Lake however, at the time of their disappearnce, the family was living in Prince George.
Doreen was the oldest among three sisters and according to Marlene Jack, she was sort of a mother-figure as she took care of the two younger sisters.
“She always looked after us because we never had a mom and protected us in a lot of ways. She was always joking, happy, in her way she was happy. In a bad situation, she would find ways to make everyone laugh. Always happy to see everybody. Ronnie was the same,” said Jack who was there around the time when the older son Russell was born but had never met Ryan as she had already moved away when he was born.
The case has been open for 31 years now. RCMP spokesperson Cpl Madonna Saunderson, told Lakes District News in an email that there is no new information on the Jack family investigation however, the RCMP is encouraging anyone with any information to contact them.
In the meantime, Marlene Jack said that she will continue to look for answers.
“I am advocating for my sister because she is not here to do it herself. My sister matters, Ronnie matters, so do those kids. I am going to keep yelling, keep phoning and I am going to keep moving forward with this until there is a resolve or if I am here no longer,” she said.