Singer killed by coyotes lived 'with passion': mother
The mother of Taylor Mitchell, the 19-year-old folk singer who was killed by coyotes in Nova Scotia, says her daughter would have been against killing the animals responsible for her death.
"When the decision had been made to kill the pack of coyotes, I clearly heard Taylor's voice say, 'Please don't, this is their space,"' Emily Mitchell said in a statement released Thursday.
"She wouldn't have wanted their demise, especially as a result of her own."
Taylor Mitchell, born Taylor Josephine Stephanie Luciow, succumbed to her injuries on Wednesday after being mauled by two coyotes in Cape Breton Highlands National Park the day before.
She was walking alone on the Skyline Trail when the attack happened.
Emily Mitchell described her daughter as a "seasoned naturalist" who loved the woods and had experience camping in the wilderness. She said Taylor had an appreciation for the beauty and serenity of nature.
"Tragically, it was her time to be taken from us so soon," she said.
The young singer had been on a tour through the Maritimes, including a host of gigs slated for New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Her next performance was to be in Sydney, N.S., on Wednesday.
Park officials said Wednesday that other hikers managed to scare off the coyotes and call 911 following the attack. An RCMP officer arrived in time to shoot one of the animals, but its body could not be found.
Mitchell, who suffered multiple bite wounds, was airlifted to the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax, where she died.
Parks Canada conservation specialists have since shot and killed one coyote, but said they were not sure whether it was one of the animals involved in the attack. The hunt for the second coyote continued Thursday.
"We take a calculated risk when spending time in nature's fold — it's the wildlife's terrain," Mitchell's mother wrote. She said there were no words to describe her grief.
"Taylor was my shining light, my baby, my confidante and best friend.
"My world is turned upside down and forever transformed without her. I don't know how to move forward from here, but I know that she would want that for me and I will try to do that in her memory and celebrate her life in the way she lived it — with passion, commitment and an unbridled loving heart."