No luck searching for Salmen in Harrison

Idaho couple attempted to find missing camper believed to have drowned in lake

Marv Anderson

The experts hired to search for a man believed to have drowned in Harrison Lake have had to call off their search.

Gene and Sandy Ralston traveled from Idaho to try using their side-scan sonar in the remote area where police believe Raymond Salmen drowned. They have a high success rate in finding bodies, helping to lay to rest more than 80 drowning victims in the past 11 years.

However, the conditions of the lake water did not make for a successful search.

“After spending two days searching the highest-probability area, the Ralstons have left Harrison Hot Springs and are returning to a search on Francois Lake,” said Kent Harrison Search and Rescue President Marv Anderson. “Gene and Sandy Ralston used their side-scan sonar and ROV under very challenging conditions, but were unable to locate Mr Salmen.”

Kent Harrison SAR members and RCMP assisted the Ralstons over the two-day search and helped them prepare for their departure Sunday afternoon. Before they left for Francois Lake, Anderson presented Gene Ralston with a donation toward their expenses.

“This was a valuable learning experience that will be extremely useful in guiding the team’s decisions in how to improve our underwater searching capabilities” said Anderson.