PIIKANI RESERVE, AB – A search for unmarked graves at former residential school sites is set to begin later this month on the Piikani First Nation.
Carolyn Small Legs will be leading the search. She says there were four schools on the reserve, but it’s possible that there may be other areas where graves could be located.
There’s no timeline yet for how long the search could take.
Piikani Councillor Troy Knowlton previously told our radio station that investigators will cross-reference graves with documented evidence of those who died while attending the schools, and try to uncover explanations for some of the undocumented deaths.
He says there are countless stories about kids being hauled off to residential schools and never returning home, and those families still don’t have any documentation of the deaths.
Small Legs adds that whatever comes from this investigation, the community will make decisions together about how to move forward, and how to cope with the trauma that could arise.