Lisa Marie Young was the eldest child and only daughter of Don Young and Marelene “Joanne” Martin. She has two younger brothers, Brian and Robin. Martin was a member of Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation on the west coast of Vancouver Island and both of her parents attended Kakawis Residential School on nearby Meares Island.
Young was close with her family. Martin described her as an independent woman who was a hard worker with a hard head, and had “inner strength that was totally awesome.” Dallas Hulley, an acquaintance of Young and the last person to hear from her, described Young as “outgoing, confident, bubbly,” and said “She was somebody you noticed right away, at a party or a gathering, or whatever it was. She just had a light about her.”
At the time of Young’s disappearance, her father was helping her move into her own apartment in northern Nanaimo, something she was excited about. Young was also preparing to start a job at a call center within two days of her disappearance, and considered pursuing higher education, with the hopes of becoming a television sports broadcaster.
On the night of June 29, 2002, Young left her parents residence at 11:00 P.M. to go to a nightclub with several friends. Her parents found it strange, as Young had a busy schedule for the week. Young spent the night at a nightclub in Downtown Nanaimo called Jungle (now known as Club 241) where she and several friends celebrated the birthday of their friend, Hulley. After the nightclub closed at 2:30 A.M. on June 30, 2002, one of Young’s friends began a conversation with Christopher Adair, who offered them a ride to a house party in southern Nanaimo in his red Jaguar. Despite just meeting him, Young and friends accepted the offer.
The group spent an hour at the first house party before moving onto a second house party. At the second house party, Young became hungry, but could not find anything to eat that party because she was a vegetarian. Adair offered to take her to a nearby sandwich shop, which Young accepted. The last time Young was seen was around 3:00 A.M., where she was leaving the house party with Adair.
Not long after Young left the party, Hulley received a phone call from her. She told him Adair did not take her to a fast food restaurant nor drop her off at home, but instead she was sitting in his car in a driveway and Adair would not let her leave. The final time Young contacted Hulley was at 4:30 A.M., when she sent him a text message reading: “come get me, they won’t let me leave.” Young’s final phone signals were from the Departure Bay area of Nanaimo. Family members of Young have never heard anything about her cellphone being traced down and do not know what happened to it.
On June 30, 2002, Young’s parents failed to hear from her. At first, they thought it was possible Young was too busy to answer her cell phone, but grew concerned when Young’s former roommate visited to ask of Young’s whereabouts. After calling every phone number in her phone book, Young’s parents contacted the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) detachment in Nanaimo. In the beginning, Young’s parents were told to call when she had been missing for over 48 hours, however an RCMP officer came over to the Young’s household later that evening to ask questions and get Young’s picture. A few days later, the RCMP told Young’s parents that her disappearance was being investigated by their Serious Crime Unit.
Adair was interviewed two months after Young’s disappearance. Adair was previously convicted of assault, fraud, and theft in Kamloops, British Columbia and unauthorized use of credit cards in Edmonton, Alberta. Young’s mother spoke with Adair in a police interrogation room. Prior to the meeting, she was asked to bring pictures of Young as a child, with the hopes of guilt tripping him into confessing. She asked him of Young’s whereabouts, where he responded with: “I can’t. I’m sorry, I don’t mean to disrespect your family.” Authorities refuse to confirm the validity of this conversation. Adair’s car belonged to his grandmother, Geraldine “Gerry” Adair, who was a prominent member of the business community in Qualicum Beach, British Columbia. She sold the car during the investigation and threatened to take legal actions if her grandson continued to be implicated in Young’s disappearance. She passed away in 2011.
Allison Crowe, a friend of Young’s, has since produced and released a song titled “Lisa’s Song” in memory of Young.
Young’s mother experienced health complications after Young vanished. Before Martin passed away on June 21, 2017, she had been taking dialysis, suffered from hypertension, and was on a waiting list for a kidney transplant. Martin’s family members believe the cause of her deteriorating health was from the stress of not knowing what happened to her daughter. Martin’s sister, Carol Frank, revealed that Martin tried to hide her and Young’s First Nations ancestry from the public, out of fear that Young would be assumed to be a sex worker, an alcohol or drug addict, or living on the streets.
Hulley, the last person to hear from Young, passed away on March 25, 2018. While walking along British Columbia Highway 19A with a 27-year-old female friend at 1:00 A.M., he stepped into the northbound lane to retrieve something he had dropped, only to be struck by a car. He was pronounced dead at 6:15 A.M. the same day. Although the 62-year-old female driver was driving at least ten kilometers under the speed limit, she was unable to avoid him, due to the lack of reflective clothing. He was 38-years-old at the time of his death.