B.C. man dragged from campsite, attacked and killed by bear

Last weekend a 27-year-old man was dragged from his campsite and killed by a black bear after falling asleep near the site’s fire pit.

Mackenzie, B.C.-resident Daniel Ward Folland O’Connor was attacked at the small forest service campsite—about 10 kilometres from Mackenzie—while on a weekend trip with his fiancé, Jami Wallace, who was sleeping inside their motorhome at the time of the incident.

According to CBC, Wallace awoke in the morning to a trail of blood and a missing fiancé. She followed the trail but did not come across the bear, “because she was doing a lot of screaming for [her fiancé],” said O’Connor’s father.

Wallace was without cell service, so she drove for help at around 9:30 a.m on Sunday morning. She reached O’Connor’s father who immediately rushed to the campground and began searching for his son.

When he followed the blood trail, the bear was there, standing over his son’s body. “I couldn’t go closer,” he told CBC, and he waited in his truck for officials to arrive.

Not long after the RCMP and B.C. conservation officers arrived, the RCMP shot a lone wolf and a black bear weighing an estimated 140 kilograms, as they were unsure which animal killed O’Connor.

While a wolf had visited the campsite two days prior, which was documented by Wallace and posted on her Facebook page, no wolf marks were found on O’Connor’s body.

“The conservation officers, who know these things very well, confirmed that the injuries he had suffered were absolutely consistent with a black bear attack,” Barb McLintok of the coroners service told CBC.

It is still not clear why the bear attacked O’Connor.

“He loved the bush…he loved camping. And people loved [him],” O’Connor’s father told CBC.

O'Connor and his fiance
O’Connor and his fiance, Jami Walllace, in February. Photo courtesy of CBC.