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Body of ex-Isles No. 1 pick found in Alps

Posted: Monday July 21, 2003 6:16 PM
Updated: Monday July 21, 2003 8:38 PM
  Duncan MacPherson Despite being a first-round pick, Duncan MacPherson never played in the NHL AP

REGINA, Saskatchewan (AP) -- The body of a former NHL first-round draft pick who disappeared in Austria almost 14 years ago has been found frozen in the Alps.

Duncan MacPherson, who was selected 20th overall by the New York Islanders in 1984, was last seen on Aug. 9, 1989, while snowboarding on the Stubaier Glacier.

The body was discovered late last week by an employee operating a snow-grooming machine at a summer ski resort in Neustift, near the Italian border.

MacPherson's parents were scheduled to leave for Austria on Tuesday.

"We feel very sad," said Lynda MacPherson, who was notified about the discovery Friday by a friend from Innsbruck who met the couple during the first of their seven visits to Austria in search of their son.

The family was contacted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Austrian officials over the weekend.

"At 3,000 meters, the body would be pretty well frozen the whole time. His identification was in his pocket," she said. "They didn't have a problem identifying him. His dental records are there and our DNA is there.

"Even so, I have to see the body. I have to know for certain that it is him."

MacPherson was 23 when he disappeared while on his way to take a job as a coach with a hockey team in Dundee, Scotland.

He played three seasons in the American Hockey League, but didn't make it to the NHL. When his contract with the Islanders expired in 1989, he accepted an offer to become a player-coach for Dundee.


 
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