Family returns to mourn, ask for answers
Published on May 21, 2012
Balloons were released Saturday in memory of Kevin Martin who as a child was a friend of one of the people getting married. It wasn't until after she had picked the date for her wedding that she realized that it was the same day he had disappeared and...
Samantha Thomas still thinks about her big brother often. She remembers how he loved the song "Whoomp! There it is." She remembers too him slamming a door on her finger once.
He was the older brother who easily found his way into mischief, but one that took the time to help her learn how to ride her bike.
Samantha is getting married soon and would love for him to be there, but he can't be.
When she was just six years old, Kevin jumped over the fence in their yard and disappeared from her sight and life for good. Eighteen years later all she's left with are memories and a loss that still brings tears to her eyes.
No one in the family knew where Kevin was going that day after they pulled into their Stellarton yard after picking up the 13-year-old from a Thorburn home he had runaway to earlier, but his mother assumed he was going away for a bit as he had done a couple times in the past. Only this time he didn't return in a few hours or a day or in the weeks that followed.
Police searched for him at various locations that year, but with no luck and for six years the family was left with only questions and worry. In March 2001, they finally did get one answer, but it was not the one they were hoping for. November, 2000 a body was found 20 metres from a remote logging road in Burnside in a shallow grave near the Pictou-Colchester county line. In the months that followed forensic specialists with the RCMP identified the remains as Kevin's. The missing person case was now a murder mystery that to this day is still unsolved. Hugh Muir was an officer in Stellarton at the time Kevin went missing and for years followed the case. He retired this year though and Kevin's mother Bonnie said she isn't sure who is going to investigate it now.
"I don't know if his case is even active," she said.
She said she can empathize with other people whose loved ones have been murdered and in particular this last year her heart has broken as she heard the tragic news of the murders of Amber Kirwan and Eddie Phalen. She hopes, though, that like the Kirwan family, someday she might be able to hear the news that someone has been arrested for the death of her son. She wants to know who killed him and why. She wants to see that person or persons brought to justice.
"I truly believe it will happen," she said. "It may not happen in my lifetime, but there will be justice for him."
Every year Bonnie and other family members return to Pictou County from Summerside, where they are now living to visit Kevin's grave and this past Saturday was no exception. His mother Bonnie and sisters Samantha and Danielle were joined by his cousin Tim and Kevin's aunt Trina Cosh who still remembers her fun-loving nephew - "an absolute sweetheart."
They stopped by at a wedding of a childhood friend of his who was getting married and watched as balloons were released in his honour. They floated into the sky until like Kevin, they disappeared from sight.
As they have other other years family members shed tears at Kevin's graveside and prayed for answers.
Bonnie remembers her son eating with his arm wrapped around his plate to keep anyone from stealing a bite. He loved food and loved life. If he were around today, he would probably be enjoying time with his eight nieces and nephews, he might even have his own children. For sure, he'd be excited about his kid sister's upcoming wedding.
But somebody took that away from him and his family. Who? Why?
"Somebody knows," Bonnie says.
She begs them to come forward.http://www.ngnews.ca/News/Local/2012-05-21/article-2984479/Family-returns-to-mourn%2C-ask-for-answers/1