FORT MCMURRAY — Had it not been for his wife, his friends and some good samaritans responding to a Facebook post, Trevor Simon would have likely frozen to death on Friday.
During a Thursday hunting trip with friends approximately 100 km north of Fort McMurray, Simon crossed the Firebag River to retrieve a moose he shot. The group loaded the animal onto a canoe, but the weight was heavier than expected.
Because Simon was the lightest in the group, he volunteered to take the canoe around a bend to a landing, where the animal could be cleaned and loaded onto a truck.
When his friends arrived at the location, Simon was missing. Police were contacted at 6:30 p.m. but when rain turned to snow and a police truck got stuck, they postponed the search to Friday morning.
That’s when his wife, Trista, posted a message on a Facebook group titled “Fort McMurray Everything Goes!!!” asking for a boat.
“I know not everyone should run into the woods during these situations, but this was done safely,” she told QMI Agency. “Why not turn to the community, to people who are always out there and know the area? We knew where to look.”
As night fell, Simon began hearing wolves nearby. He fired two shots into the air to scare them away and to let people know where he was, before climbing a tree.
He fell on his way down the tree and was found at 3 a.m. lying at the base by his wife and a group of about 30 who were looking for him.
“They were friends who saw the post, they were friends of friends and random people who wanted to help,” said Trista.
Simon is in hospital recovering from hypothermia. Doctors say he may have also fractured a vertebrae and had frostbite.