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Jul 21, 2021
Two women will paddle from Sault Ste. Marie to Spanish following the recent discovery of unmarked graves at a former residential school site in British Columbia.
Lue Mahaffey and Paige Simon were deeply affected when they learned of the 215 children discovered at Kamloops Indian Residential School in the spring.
“There’s been a history that we have buried, that we have literally hidden for so many years,” said Mahaffey, a Thessalon resident.
Simon, an Eabametoong First Nation member who is a second-year social work student at Algoma University, wanted to do something in response to the graves being found, but didn’t know what. Mahaffey, who she’s known for more than a decade, suggested a canoe trip between the two communities. The pair start their roughly 260-kilometre trek in Mahaffey’s 16-foot touring canoe on Saturday. They expect to take 14 to 17 days averaging 17 kilometres a day to reach the community of 700.