An Indigenous grandmother who spent the last year walking across Canada to honour the lives of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG) culminated her trip with a celebration in Fredericton this weekend.
Krista Fox began her trek, known as Krista’s Kilometres for MMIWG, in Beacon Park in Victoria, B.C., inspired by the loss of a family member.
“Feb. 18, which was my 54th birthday, should have been my grandson’s sweet 16,” she told CTV Atlantic, noting her grandson passed away on Dec. 9, 2020.
About twenty people gathered to welcome her at her journey stopping point.
For the family of Erin Brooks, who went missing from St. Mary’s First Nation in Fredericton 10 months ago, this event hits close to home.
“The void of losing somebody and not knowing where they are, it’s horrible and I wouldn’t wish it on anybody,” said Chris Fowler, Brooks’ husband.
“These great women doing these great things to raise awareness to try and help us bring Erin home and everyone who’s lost or murdered or missing, just to bring them home to their families.”
Brooks was last seen on Dec. 27, 2021, wearing blue jeans, a black jacket and black boots. She is roughly five-foot-three and weights about 115 pounds.
The community of Sitansisk welcomed Fox’s message.
“It brings the reality that this issue,” said Chief Allan Polchies. “This trauma happens from coast to coast, and knowing that it just doesn’t affect Wolastoqey or Mi’kmaq communities, it affects the 643 First Nations across Turtle Island.”
For Wolostoq Grand Chief Ron Tremblay, the lack of action to address violence against Indigenous women and girls speaks volumes.
“Where are the federal and provincial governments?” he asked. “They’ve been talking about reconciliation for years and they’ve done the calls to action and there’s still nothing, and we’re still waiting.”
Earlier this week, Fredericton police announced a $65,000 reward for information to help locate Erin Brooks.