Reward offered in case of missing Steinbach man
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The family of a missing Steinbach man fear he’s been a victim of foul play and has decided to offer a $10,000 reward for information to help locate him.
Ryan Maynard hasn’t been in contact with his family or friends since he was last seen in the southeastern Manitoba city six weeks ago.
“We know somebody knows something. We thought maybe this (reward) would help them come forward, and guide us in the direction of his whereabouts,” said Allison Zaporozan, whose boyfriend is a cousin to Maynard. “He has a four-year-old daughter who keeps asking questions. We can’t answer them for her.
“She’s crying, ‘Where is my dad?’”
She said Maynard was last seen leaving a home on Cedar Crescent in Steinbach, about 50 kilometres southeast of Winnipeg on Nov. 20. He was last heard from by a relative on the same day.
His family, who’ve held searches in and around Steinbach, believe he is dead.
“At this point, we’re trying to hold onto a little bit of hope, but we do believe something terrible has happened to him,” Zaporozan said Wednesday.
“His mom is is really struggling. She is determined to find where his body is.”
The disappearance, his family said, is out of character because Maynard — whose 30th birthday was on New Year’s Eve — stayed in touch and would pop by relatives’ homes.
Zaporozan said Maynard visited her place a few days before he vanished.
The holiday season and Maynard’s recent milestone birthday were a hard time for his loved ones.
They urge people with information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, to help RCMP investigators .
“It’s been extremely draining and very hard for the family,” said Zaporozan. “Everybody is feeling overwhelmed, devastated. We know that he’s gone.
“The most frustrating part is somebody knows something, and they’re not talking.”
Maynard was homeless and struggled with addiction and mental health issues, she said.
He was recently in an addiction rehabilitation program.
Zaporozan is concerned some people may wrongly dismiss his disappearance or his family’s anguish because of his circumstances.
“Ryan would take his shirt off his back for anybody. He would go above and beyond for his family and friends,” she said. “His little girl was his world. He was trying to get help for himself.
“He’s got a heart of gold, and people out there are cruel.”
In December, family members, friends and supporters scoured streets, fields, bushes, yards and other places during searches involving people on foot, snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles.
The family has been working with the Hutterian Emergency Aquatic Response Team, a civilian search and rescue group run by members of Oak Bluff Hutterite Colony near Morris.
Zaporozan said another search will be held if Maynard isn’t found before spring.
She hopes it won’t be necessary thanks to the $10,000 reward. Maynard’s family raised funds, in part, through online donations.
Zaporozan said the RCMP is unable to share all of its information with the family while it continues to investigate.
“We don’t know what they all know,” she said.
RCMP spokeswoman Cpl. Julie Courchaine said the investigation is active.
“We continue to follow up on all tips received and hope that at some point we will be able provide the family with the answers they are looking for,” Courchaine wrote in an email.
Police did not say if foul play is suspected.
Anyone with information about Maynard’s whereabouts is asked to call Steinbach RCMP at 204-326-1234 or submit an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers via 1-800-222-8477 or www.manitobacrimestoppers.com.
As a general assignment reporter, Chris covers a little bit of everything for the Free Press.