Slain Winnipeg teen Cooper Nemeth to be remembered at service Monday
Obituary highlights 17-year-old's 'passion for sports' and thanks those who helped search for him
A "celebration of life" service will be held in downtown Winnipeg on Monday afternoon for Cooper Nemeth, the 17-year-old boy whose body was found a week after he went missing.
Details of Nemeth's service were included in his obituary, which has been published on a local funeral home's website. It will begin at 3 p.m. Monday at the Calvary Temple on Hargrave Street.
Hundreds of Manitobans joined Nemeth's family and friends in searching for the teen from Feb. 14, when he was last seen leaving a house party, until Feb. 20, when his body was found in a garbage bin behind a house in the East Kildonan neighbourhood.
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"As a family, we cannot express how overwhelmed we are from the support from so many people throughout the city of Winnipeg and beyond," the teen's family wrote in his obituary.
"It was truly a showing of how a community can come together to help each other in their time of need."
Nicholas Bell-Wright, 22, has been charged with second-degree murder in Nemeth's death.
In the obituary, the family thanked Det.-Sgt. Shaunna Neufeld and other members of the Winnipeg Police Service for "all their hard work over the past few weeks," as well as close friends and volunteers.
The family also talked about Nemeth's love of sports, including hockey, which he started playing when he was five years old. He also played soccer, football and ball hockey.
"Cooper had a passion for sports and always brought life to the teams he played for," they wrote.
The obituary states that in lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Nemeth's name to the Dianne Woods Memorial Player Assistance Fund with Hockey Winnipeg, to KidSport Winnipeg, or "by contacting James Favel with the Bear Clan Patrol."
The Nemeth family prepared a dinner on Friday to thank the Bear Clan, a North End street patrol that helped search for the teen last week, then held a smudging ceremony in his honour earlier this week.
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"We're non-indigenous. They're indigenous. It's pretty rare that those communities from both sides reach out to each other," said Laresa Sayles, Nemeth's aunt.
"These people came with open and loving arms to us and wanted to help, and they went to the scariest and toughest places in the city and searched for Cooper. To me, that shows you are true and genuine salt of the Earth."