'We're all in it together': Winnipeg yard sale raises money for families of Nelson House boys killed by car

A Winnipeg woman shaken by the tragic death of three boys hit by a vehicle in Nelson House First Nation in April is doing her part to help a community near to her heart.

Scarlette Starling hosting charity yard sale this weekend to support families, call for foot path

Keethan Lobster, left, Terrence Spence, top, and Mattheo Moore-Spence, bottom, died after being struck by a vehicle near Nelson House on April 28, 2018. (GoFundMe)

A Winnipeg woman shaken by the tragic death of three boys hit by a vehicle in Nelson House First Nation in April is doing her part to help a community near to her heart. 

Scarlette Starling, who is a member of First Nation but didn't grow up in the community, is hosting a charity yard sale this weekend at Dhillon Automotive in Winnipeg.

Proceeds will be split between the families of the three boys and an initiative to create a foot path to prevent similar tragedies in the future.

"I couldn't imagine my son going out to play and never coming home," said Starling, 31.

"It's just so sad that one part of the reserve doesn't have a safe walking path. It took three kids to die for someone to realize we need a walking path."

Scarlette Starling organized the charity yard sale underway this weekend at Dhillon Automotive Group in Winnipeg. (Submitted by Scarlette Starling)

Starling spoke to Marcel Moody, chief of the Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation, which includes Nelson House, to ensure she had the community's blessing.

"He said, 'No matter if you don't live here, your heart will always be here,'" Starling said. "I said, 'That's very much true.'"

Terrence Spence, 13, and 11-year-olds Mattheo Moore-Spence and Keethan Lobster were on their way home from a springtime trek, walking and riding their bikes, when they were hit by a vehicle the night of April 28.

Two other boys, both cousins of Lobster, survived.

Since the tragedy, the community has heightened calls for lighting on the road and a pedestrian path along the side.

A GoFundMe page to help with funeral costs, support the families and implement safety measures like a biking trail has raised $64,000.

Todd Norman Linklater, 27, also from Nelson House, is charged with numerous offences in relation to the crash, including impaired driving causing death.

Family members say they want to forgive the driver charged in the death of three boys:

'We want him to know we forgive him': Nelson House families feel for man charged while mourning boys' death

5 years ago
Duration 2:12
Fellow community member charged with impaired driving

Starling wants the three families to know that many people are backing them.

"We're all in it together. We're all here to help one another," she said. "I don't live there, but I want to show you that I care."

The yard sale, featuring a barbecue, face painting and an inflatable bouncy castle, is underway at Dhillon Automotive at 715 Pembina Hwy. until 4 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. 

With files from Erin Brohman, The Canadian Press