Barbara Suggashie has only seen the house where her daughter died by suicide from the road.
She’s never gone inside.
She’s never gone in the room where Kanina Sue Turtle, 15, hung herself Oct. 29, 2016.
But now Suggashie says she is ready.
“I need closure,” she said.
It’s about 314 kilometres to closure as she began the walk Thursday in Red Lake and is walking along Hwy. 105 to Sioux Lookout.
She said she also wants to prove to Tikinagan Child and Family Services she is a good mother – that she loved Kanina.
APTN uncovered the home where Kanina died is owned by Tikinagan, and is an agency-operated foster home.
Suggashie said, so far, Tikinagan has agreed to support the walk.
“They (Tik) want to know when I get there because they don’t want anybody in the house,” said Suggashie.
She’s still thinking of what to say to Kanina once in the room.
When asked she was silent.
“I don’t know, but I have been talking about doing this for a long time,” she said. “I really miss her so much.”
Kanina recorded her suicide on her iPod, as reported by APTN in February. She had tried the day before as well, and had several incidents of self-harm in the weeks prior.
But somehow Kanina was left alone in a backroom of a foster home in Sioux Lookout for about 45 minutes before a Tikinagan worker came to check on her.
APTN viewed the video, which is about an hour long.
On the video the worker comes into the room and said what sounds like “Kanina, take my hand.”
She then lays Kanina on the floor, which isn’t visible in the video, and leaves the room. She returns quickly talking on a cellphone with emergency personnel.
She also appears to try to resuscitate Kanina by pumping air into her lungs with a plastic device.
“She’s gone,” the woman says as a baby can be heard crying from another room.
Within minutes sirens are heard and paramedics arrive.
“No pulse,” one of them is heard saying.
Kanina never said anything in the video where she died, but in the attempt the day before she did.
“I don’t know what to do anymore,” Turtle says. “I’m sorry for what … umm… I’m going to do.”
The video is just over a minute when she stopped recording.
It was later learned by APTN that Kanina was suspected of being in a suicide pact.
Kanina’s death is one of 11 currently being reviewed by the chief coroner of Ontario after he found issues with each child’s level of care while in protective services.
Dirk Huyer is leading what he’s calling an “expert panel” to take an expanded review of each death between Jan. 1 2014 and July 31, 2017.
That report is supposed to be released this summer.
Kanina’s family still doesn’t know why she was left alone for 45 minutes the day she died but hope the Huyer’s report finds out.
Suggashie said the walk is also suicide awareness and she and her son made it nine kilometre’s the first day.
They were up early Friday to get started again.
She’s not sure how long it will take them but Suggashie is convinced closure is on the other side of that door.
“I need to do this,” she said.
Update: Barbara Suggashie says Tikinagan is now covering the costs of the walk, including providing a van and driver, as well as hotel rooms at night.