Alberta woman dies after falling from Hay River highrise

Family of the woman who died after falling from the Mackenzie Place highrise last week are describing her as being a “bubbly,” outgoing person who made friends easily.
Melanie Clarkson of Edson, Alberta identified the woman as her 26-year-old twin sister, Melissa. Melissa died after falling from her twelfth floor balcony in the early morning hours of Oct. 20.
“She was a really good person,” Melanie told The Hub on Monday. “She befriended anybody and everybody. She never put anyone down.”


Police are treating the death as suspicious, but have released few details in the case. Members of the Hay River RCMP detachment are investigating the death, along with members of the “G” Division major crimes unit and forensic identification services, RCMP spokesperson Sgt. Wayne Norris said.
“It’s still a suspicious death at this point,” he said.
“It’s still being investigated.”
Melanie said her sister had moved to Hay River from Fairview, Alberta four months ago because her boyfriend had family living in town. She had been working “off-and-on” at a local grocery store.
While they were living miles apart, Melanie said her sister was always there when she needed her, and the two spoke almost every day.
“She texted me every morning to say good morning,” Melanie recalled. “If she was busy she would text me every other day.”
Norris said the RCMP are releasing few details to protect the integrity of the investigation.
“It doesn’t work well for the investigation when the information is just free-flowing out in public,” he said. “We sometimes hold back (information), especially when you want to find out the credibility of the witness.”
One witness said he was awoken at 4:30 a.m. by a man screaming for someone to call an ambulance.
“He was yelling with fear in his voice,” the witness, who asked not to be identified, said.
The man said he tried to call for ambulance, but was unable to. A few minutes later RCMP officers showed up on scene, he said. An ambulance showed up minutes later.
“At that point I didn’t really know what was going on,” the witness reported.
A Facebook page, “Melissa Will Be Remembered,” has been created in Clarkson’s honour. Her funeral will be held tomorrow afternoon in Edmonton.
Norris said the RCMP are still seeking the public’s assistance in the investigation. He asked anyone with information to call the RCMP detachment or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
“We still want people to come forward. What they might think is nothing may be a lot to us.”