NEWS

Country Singer Craig Strickland Missing in Oklahoma, Friend Found Dead

by Zach Seemayer 10:10 PM PST, December 28, 2015
Playing Country Singer Craig Strickland Missing in Oklahoma, Friend Found Dead

Search and rescue crews in Oklahoma are still searching for missing country music artist Craig Strickland after discovering the body of his friend and hunting partner Chase Morland on Monday.'

Strickland, 29, and Morland, 22, went missing on Saturday after embarking on a duck hunting trip, and sending out an ominous tweet about the severe weather the two were facing.

"In case we don't come back, @BackroadCRAIG and I are going right through Winter Storm Goliath to kill ducks in Oklahoma. #IntoTheStorm," Morland wrote on Twitter on Saturday evening.

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The two were seen roughly two hours after Morland posted the message to Twitter, reportedly headed to Kay County, Oklahoma.

According to Oklahoma News 9, authorities found Strickland and Morland's boat capsized, but did not locate either of them at the scene. Police later confirmed that they had located Morland’s body.

Search and rescue efforts for Strickland were halted on Monday evening due to low visibility and weather, but are expected to continue Tuesday morning.

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The singer's father, Randy Strickland, spoke with ET on Monday, sharing, "[Craig is] still missing. We are trying to think of a scenario where he is still alive. Hoping against the odds. We can't even stand to think about it. We are devastated. Only God & time can put us back together."

Strickland is the lead singer and acoustic guitarist for Backroad Anthem, a local country/rock band in Alma, Arkansas. The band shared a message to Facebook on Monday updating their fans and followers on Strickland's situation.

"We received a text last night from Randy Strickland asking us band members to pray for Craig and Chase, because they had not made any kind of contact with families in 24 hours," the group wrote.

As some of you may know at this point yesterday early morning about 2 am Craig Strickland & his good friend Chase...

Posted by Backroad Anthem onMonday, December 28, 2015

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The group later shared their condolences for Morland's death, asking their fans to "please say special prayers" for his family, adding "They were very close friends and it is such a heartbreaking loss."

Everyone please say special prayers for the family of Chase Morland. They were very close friends and it is such a...

Posted by Backroad Anthem onMonday, December 28, 2015

Morland's employer, Gellco Outdoors, posted a memorial on Facebook on Monday, writing, " The Gellco Outdoors family is saddened at the loss of Chase Morland. Chase had only been at Gellco for a short time in our archery department. Chase will be missed by all here at Gellco."

"Our prayers and sympathy go out to the Morland family during this time of loss," the post continued. "We ask all of our customers to remember this family at this time."

The Gellco Outdoors family is saddened at the loss of Chase Morland. Chase had only been at Gellco for a short time in...

Posted by Gellco Outdoors onMonday, December 28, 2015

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ET will continue to monitor this story as it progresses.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Kay County Sheriff's Office at 580-362-2517 or the Oklahoma Highway Patrol at 405-425-2424.

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