News — 05 July 2017
Friendship Centre hosts vigil for missing/murdered Indigenous women

Participants in a vigil for missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada crowd the meeting hall portion of the Dryden Native Friendship Centre last week. Photo by Michael
Christianson

By Michael Christianson

With rain on the way the candlelight vigil for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women that was to be held at Cooper Park was moved to the Dryden Native Friendship Centre but it was a full circle inside.

Those in attendance lit candles and wore placards of missing and murdered women that told their names, where they were from and when their lives were taken; reciting the information they wore around their necks for the room to hear as they lit their candles was a moving remembrance of the many lives lost.  

Jerri Keeash who organized the vigil wore the name of her cousin Tammy Keeash who was found dead in the McIntyre River in Thunder Bay.

It was an emotional event for Keeash and her family who were in attendance. The feelings were mixed as so many came out from Dryden, Sioux Lookout and Thunder Bay to remember with them.

“I was really happy with the turn out, I didn’t expect there to be so many people,” said Keeash. “It was just a really positive experience being around so many people that were willing to show support and show some love to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and their families and it was just really nice seeing the community come together, this was community healing.”

Keeash thanked the many volunteers who helped to organized the vigil including the DNFC for providing the space and DAARN for providing food after the event.

She and her aunt Katy Brown are accepting donations for a headstone for Tammy. 

Participants in a vigil for missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada crowd the meeting hall portion of the Dryden Native Friendship Centre last week.
Photo by Michael
Christianson

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About Author

Chris Marchand is a native of Dryden, Ontario. He served his first newspaper internship at The Dryden Observer in 1998 while attending journalism studies at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops B.C. He's worked desks as both reporter and editor at the Fernie Free Press as well as filled the role of sports editor at the Cranbrook Daily Townsman. Marchand was named editor of the Dryden Observer in Aug. 2009.

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