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Edmonton family desperate for answers after man found nearly frozen to death

Lindsay Beaudry remembers the last conversation she had with her junior high sweetheart before their world turned upside-down late last week.

“He said, ‘Ok I love you, I love you.’ I said, ‘I love you too.’ Because we say I love you about 20 times before we hang up the phone.”

Last Wednesday night, Jennon Morin and his brother were at Grand Villa Casino in the Ice District gambling and watching the Oilers play the St. Louis Blues.

Morin was happy because he’d won money. He and his brother had been drinking, so they took the LRT home.

Heading in different directions, they separated at Bay Enterprise Square, with Jennon’s brother texting Beaudry when they each got on their respective trains.

Jennon and his brother were at Grand Villa Casino Wednesday night. Courtesy: Lindsay Beaudry

Surveillance video, confirmed by Edmonton Police, shows Jennon walking away from Century Park transit station just after 10 p.m. Wednesday night heading westbound on 23rd Avenue towards his home in Terwillegar.

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Beaudry said the plan was for him to take a taxi from Century Park that night because it was nearly -30 with the wind chill.

“I’m not too sure why there was no taxi or how come he decided to continue walking. Not sure exactly what transpired there,” she said.

Jennon also doesn’t have a cell phone.

Dashcam video obtained by the Morin family shows Jennon continuing to walk down 23 Avenue, closer to 119 Street, still in the direction of home. But he never arrived.

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“I had a very, awful gut feeling that something was wrong,” Beaudry said.

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For eight years, Jennon has been the caregiver for Beaudry’s parents. His family said he was always reliable.

“When we got the news that he hadn’t been home, it was so uncharacteristic of him,” explained his sister, Jolene Morin.

Beaudry was working the overnight shift at the University Hospital as a respiratory therapist in the ICU.

She called all of their family and friends in the middle of the night trying to find Jennon. Beaudry then reported him missing to Edmonton Police.

At the end of her shift Thursday morning, she rushed out to look for her partner. Little did she know, he was on his way to the hospital.

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At 6:15 a.m., Jennon was found unconscious just 10 blocks from his house, near Rabbit Hill Road in southwest Edmonton.

Beaudry said when paramedics arrived, he was already clinically dead.

“His core temperature was 23 degrees. He had ice formation on his mouth. He was in VTAC arrest,” Beaudry explained.

But the paramedics started CPR and didn’t stop and got Jennon to the hospital to begin warming him.

Police told Beaudry Jennon had been found and was at the Mazankowski Heart Institute. She knew what that meant, and broke down.

“So I called his mom and Jo (his sister), and I said: ‘I need a ride to the hospital. I can’t drive.’ I was in hysterics. I think I was just screaming.”

He had just come out of the operating room when they arrived.

“He was absolutely unrecognizable. He just looked so… devastating,” Beaudry said, crying.

She’s seen a lot of hypothermic patients over the years but says her partner’s additional injuries – two head wounds, bruises and scrapes, point to something else as well.

“It just doesn’t make sense. He has a lot of trauma, questionable to his face, the bridge of his nose.”

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Jennon Morin remains on life support Monday. Courtesy: Lindsay Beaudry

Beaudry says Jennon’s black, puffy Tommy Hilfiger winter jacket is also missing – he was wearing it on the surveillance video.

The contents of his wallet were also missing – everything but his ID card was gone.

Police are investigating. They, and Jennon’s family, are looking for answers.

“Whether it was accidental, or whether it was intentional, we just want to know,” Jolene said.

They’re hoping the public can help.

“If they could just take the little bit of time that it takes to review their dash cam or their doorbell cameras, that would be so appreciated.”

Beaudry said her partner often helps those in need.

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“He’s a very friendly person. He is very trusting. He is a person who always looks for the good in people,” she said.

“He has given multiple winter coats away. Just spur of the moment and will go in and be buying something for himself and subsequently buying something for a person if he’s seen them outside. He’s a person who stops at a red light and wants to give all his change to anyone who’s standing needing help.”

The family says another witness believes she saw Jennon near the bridge over the MacGrath ravine around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Beaudry worries something could have happened there.

Five days after the ordeal, Jennon remains on ECMO, dialysis and a breathing machine. But Jolene said his doctor is already calling him a miracle, fighting the 5 per cent odds of survival.

“I feel that he’s going to survive,” Beaudry said.

But surviving is only part of the battle. Beaudry said Jennon is likely to lose multiple fingers to frostbite.

“He’s going to have a lot of struggles in this recovery.”

“We’ve all gone out and watched a hockey game.,” Jolene added. “Unfortunately in his case, he just didn’t make it home – and we want to know why.”


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