B.C. school closes after six year old First Nation boy dies in Port Alberni home

The Port Alberni school will be closed the rest of the week following the death of a six-year-old

A six-year-old Nuu-chah-nulth boy is being remembered by his big, beautiful smile.

The child, who had family connections in both Ahousaht and Hesquiaht First Nation communities, passed away on March 13 in a Port Alberni home.

The Port Alberni RCMP responded to a call on March 13 at about 9:30 a.m after receiving a report of a young child in medical distress at a Port Alberni residence.

The child was transported to hospital and did not survive.

The RCMP are investigating and said no further information will be released.

The BC Coroners Service has confirmed it is investigating a death in Port Alberni but that no other details are available.

Haahuupayak Elementary School, where the child was a student, will be closed for the remainder of the week.

An urgent school notice was sent out to parents and caregivers of Haahuupayak school saying “out of respect for the family who has lost a loved one, we will be closing the school leading into spring break (school closed [Wednesday] until Friday).”

The notice also said the student who died was part of the Haahuupayak family and that “our thoughts and prayers go out the the family in their time of need.”

The Haahuupayak principal will be at the school to address any questions or concerns parents or caregivers may have.

A statement issued by Haahuupayak school on March 14, says “the school is heartbroken to learn of the passing of one of its own students this week. It is no easy thing to lose one of our own. As a sign of respect to his family and to honour the grieving process for all his loved ones, including staff and students, the school will be closed for the remainder of the week leading into Spring Break. We extend our sincere condolences to the parents, family, friends and community members during this tragic time.”

The school said they will not be available for comment during this “deeply personal time.”

“We support the family in their request for privacy from the media and the general public, as they grieve the terrible loss of their child,” reads the statement.

A satement from the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council (NTC) says they are deeply saddened to learn of the sudden passing of a young Nuu-chah-nulth child.

“We are told that this young child had a big, beautiful smile, and that he touched many lives – his loss will deeply affect many,” reads the statement. “We support the family in their request for privacy from the media and the general public, as they grieve the loss of their loved one. We ask others to do the same.”

Just Posted

Three candidates drop out of Central Okanagan municipal election

Two running for Peachland/OK West trustee and OK East rural director candidate step aside

Ancestral remains uncovered at Fintry to be reburied

Remains found along Shorts Creek in Fintry Provincial Park during flood remediation measures

Okanagan Rail Trail to officially open

Thursday, Sept. 27, 11 a.m., Oyama Boat Launch, Wood Lake; public welcome

Growing Okanagan tech sector hailed in new report

Study shows sector employees 12, 474 workers and is worth $1.67 billion to regional economy

Order of St. John donates $50,000 to JoeAnna’s House project at Kelowna General Hospital

The donation will help build the home-away-from-home for out-of-town families of patients at KGH

Your weekend weather update

Rain continues to move right across the Okanagan, Shuswap and Similkameen.

B.C. premier apologizes for removal of 1950s totem pole at Canada-U.S. border

First Nations say pole was raised at Peace Arch but removed to make way for tourism centre

Tornado touches down in Ottawa and Gatineau, Que.

Environment Canada says cars and homes have been damaged by severe thunderstorms and high wind gusts

Low risk associated with case of pneumococcal disease in the South Okanagan

No identified risk to the public from recent case of pneumococcal disease with associated meningitis

An unexpected sight: Bear spotted eating another bear in central B.C.

Cheslatta Carrier Nation Chief finds bear eating another bear’s carcass

RCMP confirm death of missing BC teen Jessica Patrick

No details on cause were given. Case is under criminal investigation and police are asking for tips.

CUTENESS OVERLOAD: 2 sea otters hold hands at the Vancouver Aquarium

Holding hands is a common – and adorable – way for otters to stay safe in the water

B.C. teen with autism a talented guitarist

Farley Mifsud is gaining fans with every performance

Yukon man facing new attempted murder charge in B.C. exploding mail case

Leon Nepper, 73, is now facing one charge each of aggravated assault and attempted murder

Most Read