Ardeth Wood (October 28, 1975 - August 6, 2003) was a graduate student at the University of Waterloo who was killed in a forcible drowning in the city of Ottawa. The initial search for Ms. Wood was one of the largest search efforts in the city's history, and the two-year search for her killer was one of the largest manhunts in Canada.
Ardeth Wood was the first daughter born to Brenden Wood and Catherine Ashley, October 28, 1975 in St. John New Brunswick. Ms. Wood spent most of her life in Ottawa
, and graduated from Lester B. Pearson Catholic High School
in 1994. She proceeded to undergraduate
studies at Carleton University
before pursuing a PhD
at the University of Waterloo
. Ms. Wood was recognized as an exceptional student, and, in Waterloo, was co-editor of Eidos: The Canadian Graduate Journal of Philosophy
Ms. Wood was on leave from her doctoral studies and visiting her family in Ottawa
in the summer of 2003. She was riding her bicycle along a path beside the Rockcliffe Parkway
in the Green's Creek
area when she was last seen on August 6
News of her disappearance was reported widely in Canada, and the entire city of Ottawa rallied around a search effort that involved hundreds of volunteers, the police, and the military. Her body was found in the woods around Green's Creek on August 11, 2003.
Ottawa police received many tips that a man on a bicycle was seen luring women into the woods along the path where Ms. Wood had travelled. A composite sketch of the murder suspect was compiled soon thereafter, and was widely distributed across Canada.
Over two years after the murder, on October 20, 2005, police arrested Chris Myers, a 25-year old man, who had been previously charged with assaults in North Bay, Ontario. Staff Sgt. Randy Wisker led the investigation into Ms. Wood's murder, and relied on a loose collection of tips prior to the arrest.
On January 8, 2008, Chris Myers pled guilty
to Ardeth Wood's murder
Ms. Wood has been remembered with scholarships
in her name at the educational institutions where she studied:
A "spectacular Bebb's oak" tree in the Dominion Arboretum of the Central Experimental Farm was dedicated to Wood in 2007.