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Body of former Airdrie Thunder captain recovered from BC lake

By: Lucas Punkari

  |  Posted: Thursday, Jul 24, 2014 10:48 am

Kevin Boutlier (left) celebrated a goal with teammate Cache Doolgege during the 2009/10 season for the Airdrie Thunder.
Kevin Boutlier (left) celebrated a goal with teammate Cache Doolgege during the 2009/10 season for the Airdrie Thunder.
FILE PHOTO/Rocky View Publishing

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Almost a year after he drowned on Shuswap Lake in British Columbia, the body of former Airdrie Thunder captain Kevin Boutilier has been recovered.

According to the RCMP, the 25 year old’s body was recovered by Ralston and Associates, a private recovery service on July 10 and was identified by local coroners.

It was not known as of press time who hired the private search company.

The Calgarian drowned on Aug. 24, 2013 while on a houseboat with a group of people in the lake’s Narrows area, according to the RCMP, when five or six people dove into the water to recover a hat. Boutilier failed to resurface after going under around 4:15 p.m., which led to a month-long search for the body that was called off in October 2013.

During his three seasons with the Thunder, Boutilier had 120 points in 81 games, and was the team’s captain during the 2009/10 season, where he also won the team’s defenceman of the year award.

“Kevin could have played anywhere but he really enjoyed playing in Airdrie,” former Thunder President Frank McEvoy said. “But he was a great person both on and off the ice, and that was evident during his memorial service in Calgary last September when they packed the building for it.”

“Everyone who’s ever met him, and especially his family and friends, still miss him,” he added. “Now that his body has been recovered, hopefully everyone finds a bit of peace.”

Prior to playing for the Thunder, Boutlier played for the Western Hockey League’s (WHL) Chilliwack Bruins for two seasons from 2006 to 2008.

Following his time in Airdrie, he spent two seasons with the Horse Lake Chiefs in the North Peace Hockey League (NPHL), where he scored 33 points in 27 senior men’s league games.


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