Sadly, some will remember the 2007 goose hunt for a tragic accident that claimed the life of Mistissini resident Walter Gunner, 43, when he fell through the ice on Lac Albanel May 1.
According to Mistissini Police Director Bradley Mianscum, Gunner and his wife, Margaret Blacksmith Gunner, were travelling to their goose camp when the ice began to give way sometime between 7:30 and 8 am.
Gunner and his wife had been pulling a sleigh laden with gear. “The wife managed to get out safely,” said Mianscum. “She was in the water for approximately 20 minutes, but the husband couldn’t get out or didn’t make it.”
The accident occurred not far from the Gunners’ camp. After her 20-minute struggle to free herself from the frigid waters, Blacksmith Gunner ran for help at the camp.
“Hunters went to the scene with the woman and that is where she told them that they got into an accident,” Mianscum said. “She said, ‘We went through the ice and my husband didn’t make it.’ There was only one set of footprints coming out from the water hole.”
Walter Gunner’s body was recovered the following afternoon.