Sucker Creek remembers missing, murdered

Singers and drummers were also leading in the Missing and Murdered Indigenous People Walk on Oct. 4. Left-right, are Morgan Bellerose, Cody D. Willier, Domino Cardinal, Farley Cardinal and Kaber Koski.

Richard Froese
South Peace News

Missing and murdered Indigenous people were remembered at a special walk Oct. 4 in Sucker Creek First Nation.
About 150 people gathered for the Missing and Murdered Indigenous People Walk hosted by Sucker Creek Health.
Elder Mary Willier prayed for them to return as she opened the event.
“We hope and pray to our Creator to bring them home to us,” Willier said before the prayer.
Councillor Connie Calliou thanked the people attending for their support.
“It’s great we can pray for each other and people and families affected by missing and murdered Indigenous people,” Calliou said.
“Continue to support our families.”
Sucker Creek health director Tanis Willier says the day is a time to reflect and to remember and honour the missing and murdered, especially women.
“Today marks the National Day of Action for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls to create awareness and remember those we have lost to violence,” Willier said.
“Our Indigenous women are sacred as they embody the roles of caregivers, creators and knowledge keepers within our nation.”
In Canada today, Indigenous women account for four per cent of the female population and 24 per cent of female homicides, according to Statistics Canada in 2015, she noted.
Indigenous women report rates of violence 3.5 per cent times higher than non-Indigenous women and girls and incidence of death from violence occurs at rates five times higher.
“No one knows for sure the exact number of Indigenous women and girls who have gone missing or been murdered in Canada,” Willier said.
She added more needs to be done to curb the tragedy.
“On this day, we want to honour the lives of our Indigenous families by continuing to shed light on the countless tragedies involving our people, highlighting the need for ongoing grassroots advocacy,” Willier said.
“As a community, we share a responsibility to raise awareness around missing and murdered women and girls and honour those we have lost along the way.”
Lesser Slave Lake Indian Regional Council resolution health support worker Nancy Chalifoux said it’s important to work together and support each other in the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous people.
“I don’t think people understand the magnitude of this,” she said.
“All of them had families that loved them are are hurting.”
She noted families suffer.
“When it happens to your family, your family starts to fall apart. Pray for families to stay together and support each other.”
The crown heard it is also important for people in communities to care for each other.
“Let’s put an end to this, watching out for each other,” Chalifoux said.

People of all ages participated in the Missing and Murdered Indigenous People Walk in Sucker Creek First Nation on Oct. 4. Left-right, are Chasity Knibb, Jared Markus, Arden Beaver and Roni Davis. Beaver holds a photo of Terrance Alook, her uncle who is missing.
Families and people of all ages participate in the Missing and Murdered Indigenous People Walk on Oct. 4 in Sucker Creek First Nation. Valerie Flett Willier leads the walk as she carries an Eagle Staff that includes several ribbons that represents Indigenous persons in the region who have been murdered or is missing.

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