Kathy Absolon’s voice shook as she spoke, quietly, of her mother and her mother’s siblings who were never able to find any kind of healing after the racism and abuse they experienced as children.
“The residential school was a time bomb that went off in my family,” she said.
Absolon’s mother, who is now 83 years old and lives on North-Eastern point Georgian Bay, attended the St John’s Indian Residential School in Chaplea, Ontario from the age of five to 15.
Her aunts and uncles also attended the institution and Absolon said the experience of residential school has had a serious and negative impact on her family, on how they all connected with each other. It tore them apart, she said, and left them scattered to the wind.
Aboslon and many other survivors, or family members of survivors, spoke candidly Monday about the intergenerational effects of Canada’s Indian Residential School system during the final days of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Ottawa.
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