The American woman and her Australian boyfriend who were killed while on a road trip together in Canada died a "horrific death," police said.
Police believe Chynna Deese, 24, and Lucas Fowler, 23, died sometime between Sunday night and Monday morning. They were found Monday morning along Alaska Highway 97 near Liard Hot Springs, a popular tourist spot. A blue Chevrolet van, which authorities believed to be the couple's, was found nearby.
Canadian police did not say how the couple was killed but that their deaths are being investigated as homicides.
Australian police said they were told the couple was shot, in "what can only be described as horrific circumstances."
A friend of Fowler's told Australia's Network Ten that Fowler's death seems like a "nightmare" that he's waiting to wake up from.
"Everyone wants to know the answer to the question 'Why?'” Shattock said. “He was such a friendly guy, he was kind to people he didn’t even know. It’s surreal. You don’t ever think it’s going to happen to people like Lucas, but it happened.”
Deese, of North Carolina, had met Fowler at a hostel in Croatia, her brother told the Charlotte Observer. They had been together since 2017. After finding some work in Canada on a cattle farm, they planned a three-week road trip through the country. They had just started their trip when they died.
“They were deeply in love,” he said. “They met traveling and that’s just what they did - travel. He was working in Canada and they were planning an extensive road trip there for three weeks. They were going to spend a week on the ranch and the second half of the trip going to national parks in Canada.”
Two motorists say they saw the couple before they died, telling Network Ten it appeared their van had broken down. The police has not commented on their account.
Police are asking anyone with information to come forward. Authorities are specifically interested in any dashcam footage available.