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Maple Ridge woman not holding out for answers about missing sister

Sandra Gagnon sits at the Port Haney Wharf, a spot where she spent time with her sister Janet Henry. - Colleen Flanaga/The News
Sandra Gagnon sits at the Port Haney Wharf, a spot where she spent time with her sister Janet Henry.
— image credit: Colleen Flanaga/The News

Sandra Gagnon isn’t optimistic the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry will answer questions about her lost sister.

When formal proceedings begin later this year, she’ll be staying away for the most part.

“I am moving on with my life,” says Gagnon, who reported her sister Janet Henry’s disappearance to police almost 14 years ago, on June 25, 1997.

“It has torn me down in the past and I don’t want it to happen again.”

One of 62 women missing from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, Henry’s face still remains on a “Missing Women” poster.

Although there has been no conclusive DNA evidence linking Henry to Robert Pickton’s Port Coquitlam pig farm, Gagnon has little doubt about where her sister died.

“We haven’t got any answers, but the task force is almost certain that Janet ended up there. They know more than we do, but they don’t tell us everything,” she says.

She still hopes that one day her family will find out what happened to Henry.

“I hope one day we can find answers so we can go back to Alert Bay and have a memorial service and erect a tombstone,” says Gagnon.

Last week, the province announced several families of murdered and missing women will receive government funding to participate in the inquiry.

Gagnon wasn’t one of the 13 applicants who requested financial assistance to participate in formal hearings.

The Missing Women Commission of Inquiry was appointed by the provincial government last year to research the conduct of police investigations into women reported missing from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside between January 23, 1997 and February 5, 2002.

It will also investigate missing women and suspected multiple murders throughout the province.

The commission forums are expected to begin in northern B.C. in mid-June. The final report will be submitted to the attorney general on or before Dec. 31.

 

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