Memorial for Tina Fontaine being moved off Alexander Docks

Memorial for Tina Fontaine by the shore of the Red River (APTN Photo Sept. 2014)

Dennis Ward 
APTN National News 
WINNIPEG — A make-shift memorial set up for slain Winnipeg teen Tina Fontaine will be closed to the public and moved.

In a release, the city of Winnipeg said it will be putting up barricades around the Alexander Dock where the memorial currently sits.

Officials said an engineering report found that the largely wooden dock is unsafe and is in need of a rebuild and for safety reasons, the barrier will prevent public access to the riverbank.

Fontaine’s body was pulled from the Red River, near the Alexander Dock Aug. 2014.

tina fontaine (3)
Tina Fontaine

Her killer has not been found.

Fontaine was last seen in a downtown area of Winnipeg on Aug. 8.

She was reported missing on Aug. 9.

On Aug. 17, police were called to the Alexander Docks where Fontaine was found in a bag in the river.

Even Winnipeg police were emotional about the murder.

“She’s a child. This is a child that’s been murdered. Society would be horrified if we found a litter of kittens or pups in the river in this condition. This is a child,” Winnipeg police Sgt. John O’Donovan told reporters. “Society should be horrified.”

FONTAINE VIGIL

Days later, 1,000 people gathered on the docks for a vigil to the 15-year-old.

Her death renewed calls for a national inquiry into the staggering number of Indigenous women that have gone missing or have been murdered in Canada.

The Harper government has not budged its position that an inquiry will not accomplish anything.

According to the city, officials are talking with Chief Derek Henderson of Sagkeeng First Nation, 120 kilometres north of Winnipeg and Fontaine’s home community, are discussing how the memorial will be respectfully relocated to an accessible and appropriate site prior to the barricade being installed.

The Alexander Docks …

A volunteer group called, Drag the Red, has been on the Red River dragging the bottom in an effort to locate remains of missing people.

The group says the closure of the dock could force them to launch their boats from a different location on the river.

Red River searcher
A volunteer down at the Alexander Docks where searchers drag the Red River

There is no timetable to move the memorial.

There is no player at http://bcove.me/nmct6lt8.

 

The Alexander Docks sit in a remote section of downtown Winnipeg.

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Host, Producer / Winnipeg

Dennis is Metis from southern Manitoba. After spending a decade working in TV in Alberta and Ontario, Dennis returned to Manitoba to join APTN’s Winnipeg bureau as reporter/correspondent in September 2014. In 2016, he won a Canadian Association of Journalists award for his story A Soldier Scorned for APTN Investigates. In 2017, he became a host/producer for APTN National News and Face to Face. In 2020, Dennis and co host Melissa Ridgen were nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for Best News Anchor, National.