Coroner confirms body found is missing Oak Bay senior

The B.C. Coroners Service has identified Gladys Barman as the deceased person found last month by the Cowichan search-and-rescue team.

The 82-year-old Oak Bay woman was an active community member and volunteer who had been delivering the Times Colonist for 23 years.

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Barman was last seen on July 5 at the Petro-Canada gas station on West Saanich Road. Her disappearance set off an extensive search in the region.

When there was a report that she was spotted in Mill Bay, the search moved into that area.

Her family said Barman had occasionally seemed confused just before she went missing.

Barman’s dark green 2002 Honda Accord was found July 21 by an off-road motorcyclist on a remote logging road southwest of Lake Cowichan.

Search efforts involved search-and-rescue crews, volunteers, police dogs, an RCMP helicopter, drones, Oak Bay police and Lake Cowichan RCMP.

However, the weather was hot, the search area was vast and remote, and the mountainous terrain was steep and difficult to navigate, requiring search-and-rescue rope teams.

The search was called off, resuming once temperatures cooled.

On July 31, a body was found about 11 kilometres from Barman’s vehicle.

“Today, the coroner’s office has confirmed that the deceased individual is, in fact, Ms. Gladys Barman,” said Oak Bay Deputy Police Chief Ray Bernoties.

“We’d like to express our sincere condolences to the loved ones of Ms. Barman.”

ceharnett@timescolonist.com

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