Missing Acalanes Grad’s Body Found

Lauren Branagh, Staff Wrtier

7:20 9/9/2012 Update:

The missing Acalanes grad Brett Olson was found dead this Sunday morning in the Sacramento River. A Glenn County Sheriff’s Department spokesman said the body was found floating “downriver” from the gravel beach where Olson was last seen partying with friends. The body was in the middle of the river. It was spotted by people fishing on the riverbank and a nearby boat recovered it. The body was recovered and brought to a boat ramp, where Olson’s parents, Michael and Elizabeth Olson, identified the body as their sons. A candle light vigil for Olson will be held on Tuesday at 7:00 pm at Acalanes High School.

10:52 9/7/2012

On Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2012 Acalanes graduate Brett Olson was reported missing. Olson graduated in 2010 and then attended Cal Poly. He participated in the Chico float on Sunday, Sept. 3 and was reported missing the next morning.

Olson was last seen around 4:00 p.m. on Sunday. He was wearing a purple and white bathing suit. Authorities report someone matching his description around the Pine Creek area. Olson is 6’2” with dark brown hair and hazel eyes, and about 170 pounds.

The Chico Float is a college tradition held over Labor Day weekend. Participants float the river, which turns into a beach party at the end.

 Olson and a group of friends were floating down the river, when they made their way to “Beer Can Beach.” Thousands of students were at the beach where Olson allegedly went missing.

Colin Nithel, a friend who floated the river with Olson said, “There were so many people there when we couldn’t find him it didn’t even cross our mind that something had happened to him. We figured he had met up with someone and would meet us later.”

A Facebook group was formed and 66,000 members have joined in the attempt to #findbrettolson. Celebrities have also been notified to increase media attention. Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, Keri Walsh, and other professional athletes are a part of the Facebook group and have been hashtagging findbrettolson. In addition, an email was sent to Ellen Degeneres and Oprah Winfrey hoping that they can bring light to what is happening.

Search parties have been dispatching in search of Olson. Flyers adorn cars, public areas, and social media. Concerned Lamorinda students even painted a local rock above Moraga, and a sign was hung over HIghway 24 to spread his name even more. An account to fund the search has been set up through Wells Fargo Bank, and donations are being accepted to the “Olson Family Fund.”