A sacred fire was lit and tobacco was offered for two mothers killed in a Winnipeg shooting on Nov. 26 that left two others dead.
APTN News: Crystal, 34, and Stephanie Beardy, 33, died along with Melelek Lesikel, 29, and Dylan Lavallee, 41. The sisters are from Lake St. Martin First Nation, 270 km north of Winnipeg.
Their aunt, Roberta Owen, says their mother is reeling from their loss.
“My sister is numb from it, you know, it’s hard for her to move, to move herself forward but she has a big family that she has to keep pushing herself forward for,” she said. “It’s a big tragedy to all that are involved. Not just my nieces, there were three other ones involved too.”
Police said they responded to a call of gunshots in the early hours of Sunday morning in an area in the west end near downtown. Officers said they discovered five people with gunshot wounds.
Crystal Beardy and a man died at the scene. Stephanie Beardy and another victim succumbed to their injuries in hospital. A fifth victim is in critical condition in hospital. Police said no arrests have been made.
Owen said her nieces will be remembered for being happy spirits who were both mothers themselves. “They’re not just people who got in trouble with the law, these are mothers, these were sisters, these were cousins and aunties,”’ she said. “They’re human just like anybody else, they didn’t deserve none of this, they have children too. They’re not going to be able to parent their children now.”
Brad Beardy, a councillor in Lake St. Martin, said the community is in mourning and coming together to honour the sisters. “There’s a big impact in Lake St. Martin, the mother, Beverly works in our health centre and I know the ladies are putting a fundraiser together for the families for the funeral cost,”
The family is asking anyone with information to come forward to bring closure.