Posted at Sunday, September 9, 2007 4:07
Calgarians with family and friends who've
been murdered gathered on Sunday to Walk for Justice.
More than 50 people took part in the walk
to the new courthouse.
They’re trying to raise public awareness
about what they say is inadequate penalties for people
Steffi Stehwien's son Aaron Shoulders
was beaten and stabbed to death after being swarmed
So far no one's been charged with his
She's organized the walk and is frustrated
another family is watching their son cling to life after
a similar swarming incident in Strathcona last Monday
The Walk for Justice began at 12th Avenue
and 1st Street S.W. because that's where Aaron was swarmed
A moment of silence was recognized when
they reached the courthouse and then the names of murdered
loved ones were read aloud.
Donna Eaton's daughter brook was stabbed
to death seven years ago.
Her killer is up for parole next year.
“We shouldn't be tortured all over
again. Life should mean life. No eligibility for parole
for 25 years for first or second degree murder and you
shouldn't have to fight to get that type of conviction
and you do because of the overloaded system,”
Grief therapist Brian Pickering says it's
important for these victims to come together at an event
like this to support each other.
“Families can feel very isolated,
very alone, but you're not in this alone and there's
support and you do a walk and get a sense of meaning.
I think it's a very important part of the healing process
as you move forward in your grief,” said Pickering.
The walk began last year and has turned
into an international event with walks in the United
Kingdom and in other parts of Canada.
Volume 14, Issue 9
UNITE FOR JUSTICE
Three mothers who lost their sons
in brutal attacks have joined together with other
parents and families
of murder victims to take a stand for justice.
Stehwien founded the Walk for Justice for Murder Victims
in 2006 after her son, Aaron Shoulders was
murdered. On August 17, 2003, Aaron was beaten and
stabbed by 12 Asian gang members while outside of a
Calgary nightclub. He died on September 1, 2003 after
a painful struggle in the hospital. To date, his killers
remain free and his case unsolved.
Barbara Dunne, whose
son Robert was stabbed to death with a samurai sword
in 2003 joined forces with Steffi
Stehwien to take the walk to the United Kingdom.
Ali lost her son in a brutal beating in 2003 and will
be leading her Walk for Justice in the Greater
Stehwien’s walk in Calgary took
place on September 9, 2007, with other families who
have lost relatives
in similar circumstances. Beginning outside the nightclub
where her son was attacked, the walk continued to the
Calgary Court Centre for a moment of silence for victims
and returned to the nightclub where balloons were launched
in the victim’s memory.
The aim of the Walk for
Justice is to raise awareness in honour of murdered
loved ones, to cry out against
lenient sentencing, to protest rising violence, and
to give a voice back to the families of murder victims,
who are often too defeated with grief to fight back
Stehwien is also working to highlight
the danger of knives and to have them recognized as
Dr. Andy Kirkpatrick, Aaron Shoulders surgeon stated, “A
knife can be every bit as deadly as a gun or a bomb,
and I have seen too much evidence to prove that. The
only reason I see for carrying a knife in the city
is to kill, and I believe society has the right to
protect itself against such behavior.”
supports Stehwien and other families in their efforts
to achieve justice, raise
awareness and prevent similar tragedies.
Founder & Organizer Tel: