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Canadian Man Murdered in Chile While Walking With His Family

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A Retired Professor from University of British Columbia, Peter Winterburn was stabbed to death while walking with his wife and daughter in the city of Valparaiso, Chile.

According to a report in the newspaper La Tercera, the 56 year old man was walking with his wife and daughter when two men approached him and tried to steal his backpack. It was reported that Winterburn resisted the men and was fatally stabbed. The federal police in Chile and now searching for the attackers. 

A spokesperson from from Global Affairs Canada confirmed that a Canadian had been murdered in Chile. 

"Consular officials stand ready to provide assistance to the victim's family. Consular officials are in contact with local authorities to gather additional information."

Stefano Maron - Global Affairs Canada

The mayor of Valparaiso said that instances like this in the city are “rare” and that the city will use all of its resources to track down the perpetrators. 

Winterburn had recently relocated to Chili with his family at the time of the incidence. In a Facebook post the ‘MDRU’ said they are “deeply sadden by his tragic death”

Winterburn was a retired geochemistry professor from the University of British Columbia that was well respected in his field. 

A statement by the 29th International Applied Geochemistry Symposium set to be held in Chile next year had recently moved back to Chile after being away from the country for many years. 

"It was a shock to all of us, a tragedy that is hard to explain. We have great grievance and disbelief, mixed with frustration and impotence. Criminal acts such as these are impossible to understand within the good norms of life"

Brian Townley, President of the symposium’s organizing committee

In a Facebook post the brother of Winterburn expressed his sadness and frustration. 

"RIP Peter my younger brother, his life tragically taken too soon by those who feel the only way forward in life is to steal. Devastating news for both our family, his wife and his two daughters."

Brian Winterburn - Facebook

Before working at UBC, Winterburn worked 17 years in the minerals industry for AngloAmerican and Vale. He held a Ph.D from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

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