Sixteen-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard’s parents, his father Robyn-Iain Beauregard and mom Emily Steele at their son’s memorial on the Penticton waterfront where he spent much of his time while growing up. (Mark Brett - Western News)

Special memorial service to say goodbye to murdered Kelowna teen

A memorial service and celebratio of life was held Tuesday for murdered teen Elijah-Iain Beauregard

A handful of family and friends came together late Tuesday afternoon on the Penticton waterfront to remember 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard.

The celebration of life for the young man who died after being stabbed on a downtown Kelowna street in June, followed an earlier private service.

“This was just a chance to say our final goodbyes to Eli,” said his mom, Emily Steele, as she walked along the gravel pier from her son’s memorial where the small group had gathered. “We just don’t want this to happen to other families.”

READ MORE:Private viewing for Elijah-lain Beauregard to be held in Penticton

This particular spot of the heritage park at the historic SS Sicamous paddle-wheeler on Okanagan Lake had a special meaning to the teen.

“The majority of his life Eli hung out in this area,” said his father, Robyn-Iain Beauregard, as he looked around remembering the happier times. “On this point fishing, or over there on the beach or at the skate park.

“This was just where he was the happiest, this was his comfort zone, so we thought it’s just a good spot to remember him.”

Eli had moved to Kelowna just before Christmas 2018 to live with his mother, but much like his dad in his youth, he began looking elsewhere for the things he thought he wanted in life.

This eventually landed him on the streets where he had been living off and on for several months prior to his death.

READ MORE:The life of Eli’s father: How a youth stab-victim ended up on the streets

Last weekend, candlelight vigils were attended by hundreds of people on Saturday at the Sails in downtown Kelowna and Sunday at the Penticton skate park.

Since his son’s death, his Beauregard has called for more public dialogue regarding homelessness and what can be done to cure the growing homeless epidemic.

“And also my message for sure out of all this is we want to reach out to youth everywhere that might that be thinking that home is too difficult and that rules and expectations at home are not something they can handle and that the street is the answer, that is not the case,” said Beauregard. “To lose a child this way is devastating beyond words and if we can make a little bit of change out of it, that is probably what Eli would want the most.”

He described one-stop, youth-support facilities like the Penticton Foundry that recently opened as a “good step forward” but added there needs to be more funding for alternative care options.

“Kids on the street are in a lot more danger than they were in the 90’s and 2000’s,” said Beauregard. “It’s a Catch 22, every teen is different and every situation is different. For some kids these places (Foundry) are just too much like home.

“If we can find that answer, maybe we can save another teen from going down that same road that Eli did.”


 

@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


 MarkBrett
Send Mark Brett an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

 

A special table was set up where people could write their final messages to Elijah-Iain Beauregard, 16, who died in July from stab wounds. (Mark Brett - Western News)

Just Posted

Live music and harm reduction scheduled for Welcome Week

Pender Street Steppers will be playing Traverse on Nov. 28

Revelstokians trying to make a difference with Mindful Mondays

Locals invite you to make changes to reduce your carbon footprint starting one day a week

Revelstoke and District Humane Society raises $4,200

The community came out for their annual photos with Santa event

Keep that ‘friendly small town’ feel in Revelstoke this Welcome Week

Make friends with your new neighbours at one of many fun events Nov. 23-30

Bye bye Bei Bei: Giant panda born in U.S. zoo heads to China

Panda heads back to China as part of cooperative breeding program

B.C. to advocate for frustrated, confused, unhappy cellphone users, says premier

Maple Ridge New Democrat Bob D’Eith to advocate for more affordable and transparent cellphone options

WATCH: Coldstream garage fire as hot as 275 C: deputy fire Chief

Shop fire potential for ‘one heck of a fireworks show,’ O’Hara says

North Okanagan women head up college board

Gloria Morgan named chair and Juliette Cunningham vice-chair Tuesday

Artist waves women’s flag in Okanagan

SheShe declares femininity with all-encompassing exhibit

B.C. man who killed Belgian tourist near Boston Bar gets life in prison, no parole until 2042

Sean McKenzie pleaded guilty to second-degree murder of 28-year-old Amelie Christelle Sakkalis

‘Very disrespectful’: B.C. first responder irked by motorists recording collisions on cellphones

Central Cariboo Search and Rescue deputy chief challenges motorists to break the habit

Man accused in fatal Salmon Arm church shooting also charged with arson

Parmenter family home badly damaged by fire a month before killing

Most Read