CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A Charlotte woman and her Australian boyfriend were murdered while they were traveling the world, officials said.
Chynna Deese, 24, and her boyfriend, Lucas Fowler, were found shot and killed on a remote western Canadian highway Monday near their broken-down van.
Officials said they were exploring Canadian national parks and heading to Alaska.
Police said this does not appear connected to any other crimes.
"At this point, we have nothing to indicate their deaths are linked to any other active investigations in that area of the province or that there is a heightened risk to public safety because of this," Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sgt. Janelle Shoit said.
On Friday night, Channel 9's Genevieve Curtis sat down with Deese's mother, Sheila Deese, who said her daughter spent the last several years traveling the world and she never had a reason to worry until now.
"She loved people. She didn't meet a stranger, but she was cautious," Sheila Deese said. "It's tragic when someone dies, but when they're in another country, you can't go and be near them. You can't be face to face and ask questions or go and see where it happened. I don't want it to happen to someone else. I do want to find the person who did it."
Despite not knowing how her daughter died, Sheila Deese said she is comforted in knowing her daughter and Fowler were together until the end.
"It is a love story. A Southern girl goes out of the country, meets this Australian and they were just the same personality," Sheila Deese said. "It was like two butterflies that found each other, and they were going to be forever."
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Witnesses are coming forward saying they saw the couple and offered help with the broken-down van.
"It just blows my mind that on the same highway, there could be so good and yet so evil. I don't know," said witness Sandra Broughton.
Australian media is also reporting that a witness said she saw a bearded man arguing with the couple and is working with police to create a sketch of the man.
Australian detectives traveled to British Columbia with the Fowler family to assist with the investigation.
Fowler's father is a police inspector.
Canadian police said they don't know if Deese and Fowler were targeted or if this was random.
They said they are also working with the FBI to find the couple's killer.
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