After 3 years, one of the most painful truths is how I’ve learned to manage my expectations. The last time we had an official organized search was May 2018. I thought the snow had melted and with so many volunteers, Ryan surely would be found. For two days, I prayed and hoped and then grieved all over again. I wasn’t sure I would be able to withstand the pain of not knowing and having to leave Sun Peaks without my son. Time allows some things to be endured however fragile your heart is.

Today we make our way back to wait. To hope. To pray. And hopefully endure again.

Shtuka search resuming

Tim Petruk – May 28, 2021 / 4:00 am | Story: 335205Photo: ContributedHeather Shtuka and her son, Ryan, who went missing in Sun Peaks in 2018.

Police are returning to Sun Peaks this weekend as part of the search for a young Alberta man who has been missing for more than three years.

Ryan Shtuka was last seen on Feb. 17, 2018, leaving a house party on Burfield Drive. The 20-year-old from the Edmonton area had been working in the mountain resort before he vanished.

Extensive searches by police, search-and-rescue crews and volunteers organized by Shtuka’s family have been unsuccessful.

Mounties have been in contact with people in Sun Peaks preparing for this weekend’s investigation.

RCMP Const. Crystal Evelyn confirmed to Castanet Kamloops the operation is related to the search for Shtuka. She said the plan is for Kamloops Mounties and specialized RCMP search crews to be on-site looking for information that could lead to Shtuka.

Shtuka’s parents, Heather and Scott, were in Sun Peaks in February for the third anniversary of their son’s disappearance.

“Both Scott and I feel connected to Ryan every time we come up here,” Heather told Castanet Kamloops in February.

“For him, it was a place of happiness. … We’ve spent so much time here that we’ve grown to love it just as much, if not perhaps more, despite the tragedy.”