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Man found dead at Starvation Lake

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Michael Brown, 46, preferred to be on his own and that is how he died this summer at Starvation Lake.

The RCMP learned on the evening of July 27 that Brown was discovered dead in his tent at the lake between Squamish and Whistler.

Cpl. Dave Ritchie said the RCMP was made aware of Brown's presence at the lake earlier in the year. The police and coroner Jan MacFayden both indicated Brown moved to the lake in February.

"Our dog handler hiked up there and checked on him," said Ritchie.Other people who were concerned about him were checking on him once in a while as well.

According to Ritchie, Brown lived in Alice Lake Provincial Park before he moved to Starvation Lake.

MacFayden said Brown also lived in the Porteau area for a time.

Brown's body was discovered by some of the people who were checking on him once in awhile.

Ritchie said Brown died some time after June 25, the last time anyone checked on him. According to MacFayden, his body was in such an advanced state of decay that the autopsy failed to determine the cause of death.

Despite the lack of a solid autopsy result, the police and the coroner are satisfied Brown did not commit suicide and his death was not caused directly by other humans.

His camp area was tidy and his remains were found inside a sleeping bag.

MacFayden said Brown may have suffered from mental illness but she noted he chose not to seek help from medical professionals, so there is no way to know for certain what his mental health status was.

"People that tend to live that way, that tend to stay on the outside of things tend to have mental health issues," she said. "It tends to dictate their lives. Once you are an adult you have to seek out help yourself. It isn't that help isn't available."

Brown was very much into religion and MacFayden said Brown's faith seemed to be his help.

MacFayden said his father claimed Brown's remains.

"I have found just in talking to people after this has happened, that there are a lot of people living like this that we don't know about," she said.

jfrench@squamishchief.com

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