2 years later, Whitehorse trucker still honours memory of murdered couple

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Whitehorse trucker Ed Grennan stands at the site of a memorial he helped create for Chynna Deese and Lucas Fowler.  (Submitted by Ed Grennan - image credit)
Whitehorse trucker Ed Grennan stands at the site of a memorial he helped create for Chynna Deese and Lucas Fowler. (Submitted by Ed Grennan - image credit)

On Saturday, Whitehorse truck driver Ed Grennan will pull over on the side of the Alaska Highway, carrying photographs of Chynna Deese and Lucas Fowler.

Two summers after the young couple was found dead, Grennan plans to spend the day at the memorial he built for them, not far from Liard River Hot Springs, B.C.

"We will have a prayer down there, and a lot of the truckers will be stopping by," said Grennan in an interview with Midday Cafe host Leonard Linklater this week.

Deese, an American, and Fowler, her Australian boyfriend, were touring the country when they were shot and killed. Their bodies were found on July 15, 2019.

Grennan first erected a simple memorial along the highway near Liard Hot Springs in August, 2019 — just weeks after the couple was found, and days after the bodies of the two men who confessed to killing them were discovered in Manitoba.

"We don't want anybody to forget the tragic thing that happened there," said Grennan, who told Linklater that maintenance of the now much-larger memorial is carried out by a number of truck drivers who travel the route.

New South Wales Police; University of British Columbia
New South Wales Police; University of British Columbia

In the two years since, Grennan has been in touch with Deese's mother, Sheila Deese, who said in 2020 that it was the brightest act of kindness she has seen so far.

Having lost a child himself, Grennan said his goal is to try and ease the pain of others.

"Mostly what's in my mind is the pain of the family," he said. "It will heal slowly but it will always be there."

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