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Country Singer Craig Strickland Missing: Dog and Friend Found, Prayer Vigil Planned

More than 48 hours after striking out on an early morning hunting trip with a friend, a country singer is still missing, and his family and friends have announced a prayer vigil as they continue to hope that he will be found alive.

Early on Sunday morning (Dec. 27), Craig Strickland, the lead singer of Fayetteville, Ark.-based country/rock band Backroad Anthem, and his friend Chase Morland headed to Kaw Lake, in Kay County, Okla., for a duck hunt, despite severe weather conditions.

A search began late Sunday night after the two failed to make contact with their families for 24 hours, according to a post on Backroad Anthem’s Facebook pagePoncaCityNow.com reports that a capsized boat was found just after midnight on Monday (Dec. 28). Morland, who was 22 and from Van Buren, Ark., was found dead that afternoon, with Strickland’s dog Sam found alive next to Morland’s body.

“He was a brave boy,” Strickland’s wife, Helen Strickland, writes on Twitter, noting that Sam is “fine.” “He wouldn’t leave Chase’s body until the Warden found him.”

A search team continues to look for Strickland, 29, with a sonar-equipped boat, while his family “[is] trying to think of a scenario where he is still alive” and “[h]oping against the odds.”

According to a post on Backroad Anthem’s Facebook page, a prayer vigil is being held at the student building at Cross Church in Springdale, Ark., on Tuesday evening (Dec. 29) at 9PM. Those who cannot attend in person are being asked to say a prayer from wherever they may be at the same time.

“The power of prayer is huge,” the post concludes, adding the hashtags “#prayersforCraig” and “#powerofprayer.”

Backroad Anthem have opened for country artists including Chris Young, Gary Allan and Tyler Farr. They had a New Year’s Eve show planned in Little Rock, Ark.

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