Photo: Bradley and Verle Bushie, speak in front of the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg on Monday, September 13th.
Verle and Bradley Bushie travelled over 350km by canoe to raise awareness about their missing son and other missing and murdered Indigenous men and boys. The couple left their community of Poplar River First Nation on August 25th, and arrived in Winnipeg at the Forks on September 13th.
Verle and Bradley have spent more than seven years searching for their son, Bradden Bushie, who went missing on November 16, 2013, in Winnipeg.
“There’s not much people talking about missing men and boys, and there is not much media talking about it,” Verle said. “We aren’t trying to get attention for ourselves, we just want to bring this to light as it’s been seven and a half years he’s been missing now, and we don’t want him or a lot of other men and boys to be forgotten.”
The couple arrived at The Forks in Winnipeg to a large group of supporters who marched to the Manitoba Legislature while members of the Bushie family carried the canoe.
Bradley and Verle spoke to the crowd at the Manitoba Legislature about the pain they have endured since their son went missing.
“It is a struggle every single day because we don’t know where he is, this is our struggle every day,” Bradley said.
He also spoke about the struggles other families are going through that have lost loved ones who have gone missing or been murdered. “I know how they feel, and they know how we feel. We know the pain the families feel and we feel that same pain and that hurt,” Bradley said. “And we miss him every day, I miss my boy.”
The couple also walked from Poplar River First Nation to Winnipeg in 2016 and 2020 to raise awareness.
Cora Morgan, Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs’ First Nations Family Advocate, said the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous men and boys is a “huge crisis.”
“Every life matters; there should be value for all lives,” said Morgan. “There’s lots of men that are missing and murdered all the time, and it’s really important that there’s awareness brought.”
Bradden Bushie is described as five feet 11 inches tall, 148 pounds with black hair. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Winnipeg Police Service’s Missing Persons Unit at 204-986-6250.
Photo: Bradden Bushie went missing Nov 16, 2013.