SLIDESHOW: Fraser Valley communities mourn 215 lives lost at residential school

Hope area residents placed handmade crosses and orange shirts along Water Avenue in Hope on May 31, 2021, in honour of the Indigenous children who died at residential schools. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)Hope area residents placed handmade crosses and orange shirts along Water Avenue in Hope on May 31, 2021, in honour of the Indigenous children who died at residential schools. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)
Hope area residents placed handmade crosses and orange shirts along Water Avenue in Hope on May 31, 2021, in honour of the Indigenous children who died at residential schools. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)Hope area residents placed handmade crosses and orange shirts along Water Avenue in Hope on May 31, 2021, in honour of the Indigenous children who died at residential schools. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)
People have placed children shoes in front of churches and court buildings across Canada, including in Hope, B.C. Here, several shoes sit on the steps of the Roman Catholic Our Lady of Good Hope church, on May 31, 2021. Across the road, a display of orange shirts, crosses and flowers was being created. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)People have placed children shoes in front of churches and court buildings across Canada, including in Hope, B.C. Here, several shoes sit on the steps of the Roman Catholic Our Lady of Good Hope church, on May 31, 2021. Across the road, a display of orange shirts, crosses and flowers was being created. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)
The flags are hung at half-mast in Fraser River Heritage Park, as well as at all Mission schools and government buildings, in a show of respect for the 215 children’s bodies discovered on the site of a residential school near Kamloops. / Kevin Mills PhotoThe flags are hung at half-mast in Fraser River Heritage Park, as well as at all Mission schools and government buildings, in a show of respect for the 215 children’s bodies discovered on the site of a residential school near Kamloops. / Kevin Mills Photo
Shoes lined the front of St. Mary’s Catholic Church on May 30, 2021 in Chilliwack, as a tribute to the 215 children found buried at a residential school in Kamloops. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)Shoes lined the front of St. Mary’s Catholic Church on May 30, 2021 in Chilliwack, as a tribute to the 215 children found buried at a residential school in Kamloops. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)
Marcus Ned recites a Halq’meylem prayer in front of the sanctuary doors at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Chilliwack on May 30, 2021. He was helped with the English parts by his grandmother Casey Chapman, but spoke the Halq’meylem prayer by himself. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)Marcus Ned recites a Halq’meylem prayer in front of the sanctuary doors at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Chilliwack on May 30, 2021. He was helped with the English parts by his grandmother Casey Chapman, but spoke the Halq’meylem prayer by himself. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)
A City of Chilliwack worker lowers the flags at municipal hall to half-mast on Sunday, May 30, 2021. The city’s flags are all being lowered in honour of the children who were found buried at a former residential school in Kamloops last week. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)A City of Chilliwack worker lowers the flags at municipal hall to half-mast on Sunday, May 30, 2021. The city’s flags are all being lowered in honour of the children who were found buried at a former residential school in Kamloops last week. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)
A small memorial has been created at the site of the former St. Mary’s Residential School in Mission. (Kevin Mills/ Mission City Record)A small memorial has been created at the site of the former St. Mary’s Residential School in Mission. (Kevin Mills/ Mission City Record)
A small memorial has been created at the site of the former St. Mary’s Residential School in Mission. (Kevin Mills/ Mission City Record)A small memorial has been created at the site of the former St. Mary’s Residential School in Mission. (Kevin Mills/ Mission City Record)
Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)Dozens of pairs of shoes and toys and teddy bears were placed on the Chilliwack Law Court steps on May 31, 2021 in support of the 215 bodies of children found last week in an unmarked grave at the site of an old Kamloops residential school. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
The church at Chawathil First Nation on Highway 1 is filled with tributes to the 215 children, as seen on May 31, 2021. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)The church at Chawathil First Nation on Highway 1 is filled with tributes to the 215 children, as seen on May 31, 2021. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)
The church at Chawathil First Nation on Highway 1 is filled with tributes to the 215 children, as seen on May 31, 2021. The t-shirts have phrases written on them that children would have been thinking or saying while at the school. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)The church at Chawathil First Nation on Highway 1 is filled with tributes to the 215 children, as seen on May 31, 2021. The t-shirts have phrases written on them that children would have been thinking or saying while at the school. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)

Shoes. Candles. Teddy bears.

The colour orange.

These are the things that mourners are leaving behind on court steps, in church doorways and other public areas as tributes to the 215 children who were buried in unmarked graves at a Kamloops residential school.

Throughout the eastern Fraser Valley, tributes small and large have been created. In Chilliwack, the court steps have been lined with shoes and people have written messages in chalk on the concrete. In Hope, orange shirts and 215 handmade crosses have been attached to a fence along Water Street.

The church at Chawathil First Nation on Highway 1 is filled with tributes. The t-shirts have handwritten phrases written on them that children would have been thinking or saying while at the school, including “I miss my mommy.”

And in Mission, a small memorial is growing at the St. Mary’s residential school site.

To see the tributes, click through the above photo gallery.

The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line is available 24 hours a day at 1-866-925-4419.

READ MORE: Religious order that ran residential school renews apology to Tk’emlups te Secwepemc


@CHWKcommunity
jessica.peters@hopestandard.com

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