On the evening of June 22, 2018, Trooper Samuel Christiansen went missing. While swimming in the Ottawa River, he got caught in a strong current of rapids. Sadly, Trooper Christiansen did not survive.
The 20-year old’s body was discovered on June 27, through the search efforts of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Aviation Unit, Underwater Search and Recovery Unit (USRU), and Emergency Response Team (ERT).
Trooper Samuel Christiansen, originally from B.C., served with the Royal Canadian Dragoons based out of Garrison Petawawa.
“The Petawawa military community is mourning the tragic loss of one of our own… On behalf of 2 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group, I offer our deepest condolences to the Christiansen family, and to his fellow Dragoons who are grieving the loss of a comrade and friend,” stated Colonel Micheal Wright, Commander 2 CMBG in a Facebook post on Garrison Petawawa’s Facebook page. “Samuel Christiansen was proud to serve his country, and his loss will be profoundly felt by the Petawawa military community.”
Sherelyn Lachapelle Christiansen, Trooper Christiansen’s mom, posted on he Facebook page, “Our son, Samuel, went missing while swimming in the Ottawa River on 22 June when he became caught in a section of rapids. He has been located and has unfortunately passed.
“We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to the Ontario Provincial Police, the Whitewater Region Fire Department, the military’s Search and Rescue personnel, JRCC, his entire RCD / CAF Family and the Ottawa Valley paddling community who we know have been searching day and night for Samuel. Our thanks also go to Quebec Hydro for assisting the search by restricting their dam operations.
“Thank you for finding our son. We have received a flood of support from our home community, Ottawa Valley and right across Canada and beyond which has meant a great deal and are very grateful.”
The Christiansen family has asked for privacy during this difficult time.