Mother of man who went missing in Kelowna 30 years ago re-issues call for information | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Mother of man who went missing in Kelowna 30 years ago re-issues call for information

Charles Horvath was 20-years-old at the time of his disappearance.
February 03, 2020 - 7:00 AM

After three decades of searching for answers, Charles Horvath’s mother has officially let go of any hope her son will come home alive.

Denise Horvath-Allan applied to have her son, who went missing from Kelowna May 26, 1989, legally declared "presumed dead" and a notice was filed in the Kelowna Daily Courier this week.

“The law was only passed in England and Wales a few years ago that families can now make an Application for a Presumption of Death Certificate for a Missing person,” Horvath Allan, who lives in England, said.

She signed the application last year but it’s taken some time to process.

“My solicitors in London started to prepare a file. The process has drained me to the soul,” she said.

The application was submitted to the High Court in London  Jan. 25 and it will take a few months to get a sitting before a High Court Judge who will make a decision to grant the request or not.

“It will be a tough day when I have to go (to) court,” she said, explaining that it will allow her to tend to her son's financial affairs.

Horvath-Allan long ago realized her son had likely met an untimely end while in Kelowna. That said, she has never stopped asking for answers and she doesn't intend to do that anytime soon.

Charles was just 20 years old when he went missing.

He had been on a gap year and camping at the Tiny Town campsite and working at Flintstone park last Horvath-Allan heard from him and she believes someone who knew him during that brief time still knows what happened all those years ago. She'd like them to share that information.

“I would like to know where he came to rest the day he died, who was responsible and why he died. I don’t care about the rest,” she said, in a recent interview.

While there have been no answers there have been no shortage of rumours and  whether it was while on one of her many trips to Kelowna or after her public pleas for help, she has been made aware of many.

“A witness contacted me to say that they lived at Tiny Tent Town Campsite and RV Park 3316 Lakeshore in the ‘90s,” she said, when asked if she’s heard anything new.

“They said it was common knowledge that Charles had been killed at TinyTown, was  weighted down with cinder blocks and dumped in Okanagan Lake.”

Horvath-Allan also has the names of some people she would like to see get questioned again — the RCMP assured her when she was in Kelowna last that they had intended to do so.

They have yet to do so.

Last May, in the days before the 30 year anniversary of her son's disappearance, Horvath-Allan renewed the call for answers and the RCMP said the case is still open.

"This year Charles’ mother, who has never given up hope that someone will come forward with answers to her beloved son’s disappearance, has written an emotional poem,"  Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey of the Kelowna RCMP, said  in a press release. 

At that time she shared a poem, called 30 Years:

30 Years Beautiful Charles, loving son of mine...30-years of searching, only never to find.

Many times I've crossed the ocean...The waters ever so blue, always praying a tip, will lead to finding you.

My heart is broken, so filled with sorrow...I struggle each day, always hoping tomorrow.

You were only 20, a very good man, living without you... I do the best I can.

After 30-years of searching, I've come to regret...It's your earthly body, I have to find yet.

Begging all who know wherever you lay, please send a lead... I so often pray.

My Charles, sweet Charles... my only son.

I will continue my search, until my earth's work is done.

For whoever knows, what happened to you...Please speak up now, it's long overdue.

All I want is my child, to have and to bury, here with his family, in a quaint cemetery.

Please bring me answers, to where Charles'll be found, I'll dig myself... I'll turn up the ground.

Nobody needs to know, except you and me...Please send me a tip, and your heart'll be free.

The RCMP is asking anyone with information to come forward and call Sgt. Paul Gosling of the Kelowna Serious Crime Unit at 250-762-3300.

Or if you want to remain anonymous you can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or leave an online tip at

To contact a reporter for this story, email Kathy Michaels or call 250-718-0428 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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