March for the Missing

Keely Dakin
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Marching through the September drizzle, dozens of people remembered the missing.
The eighth annual Honouring Our Sisters and Brothers Memorial Walk began at city hall on Thursday morning, with speakers from the Women’s Commission, city hall and Prince Albert Police Service.

The Prince Albert Grand Council Women’s Commission (PAGCWC) organizes this memorial.

Shirley Henderson, chairperson for the PAGCWC, says this march is important because it helps to make people aware of the violence and that people are still going missing.

“It brings public awareness to violence.”

The walk originally began to specifically commemorate missing or murdered women, Henderson said. However, the commission found that many men were also going missing and experiencing violence.

Mary Rose Naytowhow, of Pelican Lake First Nation, was invited to speak.  She spoke for the families of Sherry Ross Morissen and Jerome Harris.

“I am one of the persons that get involved in the search and rescues. And I deal with the families that deal with the pain for the loss of the loved ones. The waiting, all the phone calls, and everything else that they go through,” Naytowhow said.

Sometimes the waiting ends in a few weeks, as in the case of Harris.

“Sometimes my heart is lonely.” Melanie St. Pierre

Harris, missing since Aug. 4 was found dead on Saturday, Naytowhow said.

Sometimes the waiting goes on for years.

Melanie St. Pierre is still waiting.

St. Pierre, of Wollaston Lake, spoke to the gathering at the Prince Albert Court of Queen’s Bench.  In her arms she carried a framed photo of her son, Jack St. Pierre.

On the July 17, 2009, her son went missing.

She spoke into the microphone with a quiet voice; “My son is still missing.”

St. Pierre traveled from Wollaston to attend this March, three years after the loss of her son.

“This is important for me, that is why I came here on (a) plane last night.”

“Sometimes my heart is lonely,” St. Pierre said, before laying a red rose of remembrance beneath a white cross, in front of the courthouse.

Organizations: Prince Albert Grand Council, Prince Albert Court

Geographic location: Pelican Lake First Nation, Wollaston Lake, Wollaston

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