Journalism of Courage

Bodies of Couple Who Went Missing 75 Years Ago Found Near Melting Glacier

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he bodies of a Swiss couple who disappeared 75 years ago in the Alps have been found at the edge of a melting glacier, Swiss media is reporting.

The couple, who were 40 and 37 when they disappeared, left behind five sons and two daughters.

Marcelin and Francine Dumoulin, the parents of seven children, went to milk their cows in a meadow in the Valais canton on Aug. 15, 1942, then vanished without a trace.

“We spent our whole lives looking for them, without stopping. We thought that we could give them the funeral they deserved one day,” their youngest daughter, Marceline Udry-Dumoulin, 79, told Le Matin, a newspaper in Lausanne.

“For the funeral, I won’t wear black,” she added. “I think that white would be more appropriate. It represents hope, which I never lost.”

Local police said identification papers were found on the bodies, which were discovered by a worker near a ski lift above Les Diablerets resort at an altitude of 8,600 feet.

The bodies, as well as a book, backpack, watch and other items, were taken to a Lausanne medical institute for DNA testing, Valais police said in a statement.

Bernhard Tschannen, director of Glacier 3,000, a cable car company, said the bodies were found next to each other, well preserved by the ice.

“The mummified bodies were of a man and a woman wearing clothes dating from the prewar period,” he told the Tribune de Geneve newspaper.

“It was the first time my mother went with him on such an excursion. She was always pregnant and couldn’t climb in the difficult conditions of a glacier,” Udry-Dumoulin said.

“After a while, we children were separated and placed in families. I was lucky to stay with my aunt. We all lived in the region but became strangers,” she said.

“I can say that after 75 years of waiting this news gives me a deep sense of calm,” she added.

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