Family and friends gathered outside the Williams Lake RCMP Detachment on Sunday evening (October 2) as they mourned the death of 21-year-old Surrance Myers.
“It’s heartbreaking,” said Yunesit’in councilor Rosalie Montgomery, who led a candlelight vigil outside the detachment Sunday night.
Myers’ father, Casey Myers, told Black Press Media he received a call from the RCMP on Saturday evening (October 1) that his son had died in police cells in Williams Lake.
He and his partner Sonya wiped away tears as more than 100 mourners sang and drummed for the family, which also included Surrance’s mother, siblings and many others.
Indigenous leaders addressed the crowd, noting they were there to support the family but also wanted answers. They pointed out that the death came just a day after the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation ceremonies.
On Sunday night, Casey said he didn’t know why his son was in custody before he died or what happened to him.
The RCMP did not immediately return calls for comment.
Casey confirmed they were told the BC Independent Investigations Officer would investigate the death.
He described his son as funny, ambitious and saving for a new truck.
He grew up in Yunesit’in and Williams Lake, played hockey when he was younger, and graduated from high school in Williams Lake a few years ago.
“I sure miss him.”
Yunesit’in leader Lennon Solomon said the death was meaningless.
“He was really trying to make a living…he was constantly working,” Solomon said. “He was so proud of his work.”
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