The Mackenzie man dragged and killed by a black bear at a campsite in northern B.C. was an avid outdoorsman who respected nature and animals, said his family.
Daniel Ward Folland O’Connor, 27, and his fiancée, Jami Wallace, had planned to spend the summer living in the woods in an RV. They were camped near the Parsnip River off a forest-service road about 10 kilometres outside of town on May 10 when the bear came. O’Connor, who fell asleep outside near the fire pit, didn’t stand a chance.
“My brother didn’t have any defensive wounds,” said sister, Folland O’Connor. “The bear hunted him.”
Folland said her brother’s fiancée had gone to sleep inside the motorhome at around 1:30 a.m. She realized something was wrong the next day when she couldn’t find O’Connor.
She tried to get their dog to find him, but the animal refused to go into the woods. She decided to search for him herself, and came upon a trail of blood. She then saw O’Connor’s body, about 200 metres up a hill.
In a state of shock, she drove home to tell O’Connor’s dad, who then called police and the B.C. Conservation Office.
O’Connor’s injuries were consistent with a black-bear attack, confirmed the service. The bear believed responsible for the attack was located and destroyed, it said.
A wolf was also shot by officers earlier at the scene, as they were unsure what kind of animal had killed O’Connor. They later spotted the bear.