Family of missing Chestermere woman issue plea for information

Aug 13 2020, 2:35 pm

The family of Vida Smith is hoping that the public can help in locating her remains.

Smith was last seen on Tuesday, July 21 in Chestermere, having left to meet a friend in Calgary.

A missing person report was filed after she failed to return home, and the investigation that followed determined that she was likely killed, with 60-year-old Kevin Barton, also known as Chris Lee, being charged with manslaughter as a result.

Even with charges laid, Smith’s remains still have not been located, and her family is now hoping that the public may be able to shed some light on where she might be.

Smith’s family issued the following statement through an August 12 release from the Calgary Police Service:

Tuesday, August 11 marks three weeks since I’ve seen my mom…You never know when you’re going to see someone for the last time.

Vida Smith is more than just a missing person or a victim…She’s a beautiful human being, she’s a friend, a mother and a grandmother. She loved her grandchildren more than anything in this world. Vida is so missed and forever loved by her friends and family.

We are beyond devastated and our hearts are broken knowing that we’ll never see her again.

Even though we are seeking privacy during this unimaginable time, we are asking for the public’s help… If you saw something or if you know something, please come forward.

Our mom deserves dignity and respect. We just want to find her and bring her home so she can Rest In Peace.”

Police believe that Barton had travelled from Calgary to Edmonton on July 22 in a beige Cadillac Escalade, and allegedly went to the Best Buy at 13924 137th Avenue NW.

missing

Cadillac Escalade (Calgary Police Service)

Police are also hoping to speak to any potential witnesses of suspicious activity in the parking lot of the Sunridge ATB at 2555 32nd Street NE on July 21.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Calgary Police Service’s non-emergency line at 403-266-1234.

Tips can also be left anonymously through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or through their website.

“Though we have laid charges, our investigation is not over,” said Staff Sergeant Martin Schiavetta of the CPS Homicide Unit in the release.

“We remain focused on locating Vida’s remains so we can help bring some sense of peace to her family.”

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