Darrell Baker is shown in this undated handout photo. Courtney Baker doesn’t know what she’s going to do with the urn she’s picked out for her little brother’s ashes. They were supposed to arrive by express post from Edmonton to Vancouver more than two weeks ago, but after the expected delivery date was pushed back several times, she’s come to the conclusion that they may be lost. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Courtney Baker *MANDATORY CREDIT*

Darrell Baker is shown in this undated handout photo. Courtney Baker doesn’t know what she’s going to do with the urn she’s picked out for her little brother’s ashes. They were supposed to arrive by express post from Edmonton to Vancouver more than two weeks ago, but after the expected delivery date was pushed back several times, she’s come to the conclusion that they may be lost. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Courtney Baker *MANDATORY CREDIT*

Sister in B.C. waits for little brother’s ashes that seem to be lost in transit

The ashes were supposed to arrive by Christmas Eve

Courtney Baker doesn’t know what she’s going to do with the urn she’s picked out for her little brother’s ashes.

They were supposed to arrive by express post from Edmonton to Vancouver more than two weeks ago, but after the expected delivery date was pushed back several times, she’s come to the conclusion that they may be lost.

Darrell Baker died Nov. 26 in Edmonton, said his sister who lives in Vancouver.

The 36-year-old’s remains were cremated at a funeral home in Edmonton and shipped via Canada Post to the family on Dec. 22.

The ashes were supposed to arrive by Christmas Eve, and at this point Courtney Baker said she’s checked the tracking number so many times she knows it by heart.

“We just want our brother to come home so we can lay him to rest,” she said.

The tracking number now shows the ashes are expected Jan. 12.

A spokesman for Canada Post said the organization will be in touch with Baker “as the item moves through our network.”

“We understand the importance of this item and have been investigating since being contacted by the customer,” Phil Legault said in an emailed statement. “The item was unfortunately mailed just days before Christmas when we were focused on clearing the backlogs caused by processing heavy volumes while maintaining COVID-19 safety protocols throughout our operations.”

Baker said the $110 urn — sky blue with a soaring eagle on it — is due to be delivered Monday.

“And what am I gonna do with it?” she asked. “We don’t have his ashes.”

She picked out the urn because eagles play a “significant” part in her brother’s Nlaka’pamux culture. He was from the Coldwater Band near Merritt, B.C., she said.

“When we see eagles, it’s a sign that your family members are watching over you.”

Baker said their mother, who has health problems, has taken her son’s death the hardest and had to be taken to the hospital.

“With his passing and not knowing where his remains are, it’s making her issue worse,” she said.

The family doesn’t know the cause of his death and is waiting on the autopsy report for answers.

Her brother moved to Alberta a few years ago and worked on oil rigs.

He became addicted to drugs about 12 years ago, but got clean and remained that way for the last decade, she said.

During that time the siblings had a falling out. Getting closure now is important for her, Baker said.

“He’s the baby of the family. You know, siblings are sort of supposed to look out for each other,” she said.

“I tried to give him helpful tips and advice,” she said. “He’s independent and likes to do his own thing. And I guess he doesn’t like receiving advice. We just lost contact.”

The older sister described her little brother as an animal lover, a kid who loved cars, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Tonka trucks and was always off on some adventure.

“He would rescue animals, find them homes, or take them in himself if he could from the time he was very young.”

The way she looks at it now, Baker said, is that her brother is away on “some adventure,” travelling like he always did.

“And when the time is right for me, I am looking at adopting a dog and naming him after Darrell or one of his middle names, which is Benjamin Clifford.”

ALSO READ: COVID-19 vaccine arrives in remote First Nations across Canada

Hina Alam, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

funeral

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Columbia Basin Trust is asking residents across the region to test their internet speeds so the Trust can better identify which areas aren’t meeting service expectations. (Columbia Basin Trust file)
Columbia Basin Trust asks residents to test internet speeds

Several communities across the Basin region, including Moyie, are asked to take the test

South Columbia Search and Rescue called in the Nelson Search and Rescue and Kootenay Valley Helicopters to provide a long line rescue. Photo: BCSAR submitted.
Long-line rescue needed for injured hiker near Trail

Members of South Columbia and Nelson SAR and Kootenay Valley Helicopters did a long-line evacuation

Cranbrook Fire and Emergency Services was responding to a fire at the corner of 2nd St. N & Victoria Avenue Wednesday morning. Trevor Crawley photo
UPDATED: Fire department response prompted by mischief, not fire

Motorists, residents advised to avoid corner of 2nd Street North and Victoria Avenue.

A sign indicating a COVID-19 testing site is displayed inside a parking garage in West Nyack, N.Y., Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. The site was only open to students and staff of Rockland County schools in an effort to test enough people to keep the schools open for in-person learning. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
4 more deaths, 54 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

This brings the total to 66 deaths in the region

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks at B.C. legislature on the province’s mass vaccination plan for COVID-19, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
COVID-19 quarantine not an option for B.C., John Horgan says

Apres-ski parties increase risk, not interprovincial travel

Downtown Fernie is pictured after a snowfall.
Worker at Swartz Bay terminal on Monday, January 20, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
Former BC Ferries employee alleges he was fired because of his race

Imraan Goondiwala has been granted a BC Human Rights Tribunal hearing

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Rodney and Ekaterina Baker have been ticketed and charged under the Yukon’s Civil Emergency Measures Act for breaking isolation requirements in order to sneak into a vaccine clinic and receive Moderna vaccine doses in Beaver Creek. (Facebook/Submitted)
B.C. couple who travelled to Yukon for COVID vaccine ineligible for 2nd dose until summer

The province is ensuring those eligible to receive the vaccine get the second shot within 42 days

(File)
Mask dispute in court leaves Vancouver cop with broken leg

Man allegedly refused to put on a mask and resisted arrest

Most Read