Rescued Oregon family simply unprepared for adventure, RCMP say

Agencies now helping the group of four get to their destination in Alaska

The circumstances leading to the disappearance and rescue of an Oregon family in the backwoods of northern B.C. can be boiled down to poor planning, RCMP said.

In a news release on Thursday, Dease Lake Mounties said the parents were simply inadequately prepared for their adventure into Canada.

“After the family was found, it was learned that they planned to travel to Alaska, while camping along the way,” the release states.

“Although they came with some camping supplies, it seems they may have underestimated the vastness of northern B.C., such as the distances between services and were not adequately prepared for the trip they had planned.”

The search for Jeffery Phan, 24, Michelle Lesaca, 24, and two children, three-year-old Satana Phan and two-year-old Satan Phan, began Wednesday morning after their car was found abandoned not far from Highway 37 two days before.

A sign had been displayed on the car saying the driver had left to find fuel. However, police say checks with all gas stations in the area had been unsuccessful.

Concern for the family escalated when police learned they had originally planned to travel to the Philippines, but cancelled their flight at the airport in Portland, Ore. just prior to boarding on May 25.

The family entered Canada at the Roosville Border crossing near Fernie B.C. on June 9 and reached the Dease Lake area, nearly 2,000 kilometres away, the following day.

The unusual and seemingly erratic series of events led RCMP to issue a province-wide call for anyone who may have interacted with the family to come forth with information on why the family crossed the border in the first place.

READ MORE: Missing Oregon family found after possibly getting lost on purpose

The family is now being supported by partner agencies to help them get to their destination in Alaska.

“There is no criminal investigation and the family is doing well,” said RCMP.

The family has declined multiple requests for an interview.

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