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Sunday, August 16, 2009

News: Aboriginal Man Dies in Grandview Park on Hottest Day of Year

I came across this distressing release that i thought readers might find interesting.

VANCOUVER, BC, MEDIA RELEASE -- (Marketwire - Aug. 14, 2009) On Wednesday, July 29, 2009, at 9:00 am, an Aboriginal man was spotted and appeared to be sleeping by Eric Schweig (renowned Aboriginal actor) in Grandview Park. At 4pm on the same day, Eric was again walking by and noticed the same man was lying in the same position but was in obvious physical distress (convulsing). This was the hottest day in Vancouver history, so the heat was very intense. When Eric checked on the man (later identified as Curtis Brick) he was convulsing and did not look in good shape. Eric immediately called 911 and one of our Vancouver Aboriginal Transformative Justice Services outreach workers to attend. Jennifer (VATJSS employee) attended and they began wetting Curtis down with cold water until 45 minutes later help came.

During the waiting time, Eric was able to get out of the man, his name and that he had drunken alcohol earlier that day. The fire truck was first on scene, two fireman jumped out of the truck, Eric began to explain his condition and that Curtis...had nodded that he had [drunk]...earlier that day and Eric told the fireman that he thinks it [was] maybe Lysol, the fireman than commented toward Curtis, "[T]hat's what you get for drinking Lysol". Eric than proceeded to explain that people are addicted to Lysol for various reasons. The other fireman proceeded to walk up to Curtis and with his foot pushed Curtis' leg and told him to "Get up!"

There was no response from Curtis because he was convulsing, they attempted to holler at him, trying to wake him up, no response, and two minutes later the ambulance attended and came on scene (47 minutes from first call and two calls to 911 later). They again were attempting to wake him up and they couldn't so they put an oxygen mask on Curtis but the VATJSS employee (Jen) said "[T]hey put it on so rough that they caused his nose to bleed profusely! It was horrible". They loaded him onto the stretcher, put him into the Ambulance, another witness (homeless client of VATJSS) said "[T]hey didn't even work on him, the lights were all off in the ambulance, they closed the door and just drove off, no lights. Two days later VATJSS Jennifer and actor Eric Schweig were contacted by VPD Homicide Squad detective Will Cho (Detective 1800) and questioned.

Eric Schweig's statement was that it was like...[a] twisted movie plot, here are children playing, hippies playing love songs (50 yards away), people laughing and playing in the water park, business all around, and here was Curtis Brick waiting for someone to care enough to help him as he dies. This stuff only happens in the Desert, not on Commercial Drive with a park full of people, unless you're a homeless ABORIGINAL man."

Facts

* At this point we know that Curtis Brick was in need of help for approximately 6-8 hours in Grandview Park (Britannia Park on Commercial Drive) and nobody assisted him.

* We know that on this day, it was the hottest day in Vancouver history and the park was full.

* We know that Curtis slowly died in the park not more than a 100 yards from the Grandview-Woodland Policing Centre.

* Curtis died less than 50 feet from a water park (where Eric and Jennifer wet the towels trying to save Curtis life).

* We don't know what happened to Curtis after he was taken away in the Ambulance: did they treat him better once they got to the hospital? Or did they leave him in the hall to wait his turn?

* Why did [people], for 6-8 hours people in the park, walk right by Curtis, [e]ven when he was in distress[?]

* When help arrived they treated him horribly and commented to him that he deserved this.

I have contacted Kat Norris who is one of our respected Advocates/Organizers in our Aboriginal Community in Vancouver. A gathering organized by Kat Norris will be taking place at Grandview Park, to bring awareness to this horrible tragedy. We are inviting all Aboriginal leaders, we have invited the Mayor, media and our community at large to mourn his death, bring awareness about his death and to hold everyone accountable that should have helped and treated Curtis Brick with the respect that he and all Aboriginal people deserve. We having been trying to locate Curtis Brick's family, we are certain that they have not been provided the full story of what happened to their loved one. Please forward the family to Vancouver Aboriginal Transformative Justice Services tel (60... or Cell (604) 340-6197.

For more information, please contact:

Christine Smith-Parnell, Executive Director, Vancouver Aboriginal Transformative Justice Services Society
Primary Phone: 604-340-6197

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3 Comments:

At 11:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

unbelievable, you know I have notices they treat aboriginal people who have addictions or in some kind of trouble and notice this on Commercial Drive? Oh they will definately have an excuse to justify there actions, it's sickening to see and hear of a senseless death. Love and prayers go out to the family.

 
At 12:32 AM, Anonymous Susan Main said...

I met a man named Curtis during my travels around Commercial Drive and have a clear picture of him in my mind. Very sad story.

 
At 12:37 PM, Blogger joann said...

I feel so bad - have they been able to reach Curtis's family yet ? If they have'nt ,why is it taking the authorities so long to locate them?

 

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