A Canadian soldier is reported missing and presumed dead following an avalanche in Switzerland, as reportedly confirmed by the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).

Switzerland Avalanche 2024

The Canadian military has tragically announced that a soldier, Capt. Sean Thomas is presumed dead after being engulfed in an avalanche while on leave in Switzerland.
According to a statement from the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), Capt. Thomas went missing during the avalanche on April 1st. Local authorities had previously reported the deaths of three individuals in an off-piste area of the Riffelberg, situated above the resort and beneath the iconic Matterhorn peak. Capt. Thomas, who joined the CAF in 2018, had recently been deployed to Jordan in November as part of the Canadian Training Assistance Team. He was scheduled to return home next month.

Avalanche Switzerland 

The statement further clarified that no other members of the Canadian Armed Forces were present in the vicinity at the time of the avalanche. Defence Minister Bill Blair expressed his condolences, stating, ““We join all Canadians to extend our condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Captain Sean Thomas who is presumed to have lost his life in a tragic avalanche in Switzerland. Canadians will remember the dedication and sacrifices made by him and his family, as he proudly served our country.”

Canadian Soldier Swiss Avalanche

General Wayne Eyre, Chief of the Defence Staff, along with other military officials, also extended their condolences. “In this moment of profound reflection and sorrow, our thoughts go out to the family, friends, and colleagues of Captain Sean Thomas. We remember and honour Captain Thomas not just for his service, but for the unwavering dedication and professionalism with which he served our nation. His absence will be profoundly felt by all those who knew him and served alongside him”. 

Zermatt Avalanche video

The military stated that it was offering Thomas’s family resources and support “during this challenging period.”
The tragic loss of the Canadian soldier has reverberated throughout the military community, prompting reflection on the inherent dangers faced by service members in the line of duty. It serves as a sobering reminder of the sacrifices made by brave men and women who serve their country with unwavering dedication. As tributes pour in from across the globe, the soldier’s memory will be cherished and honored, serving as a testament to the courage and resilience of those who serve in uniform.

Published by HOLR Magazine.

Image Credits: @CanadianForces X

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