This is the true story of Ernie Leon George. We saw this elderly gentleman standing on the side of the road, hitching, with crutches, in 30 degree weather. When asked how many people had passed him by, in the 6 hours that he had been there, heMoreThis is the true story of Ernie Leon George.
We saw this elderly gentleman standing on the side of the road, hitching, with crutches, in 30 degree weather. When asked how many people had passed him by, in the 6 hours that he had been there, he replied, “as many as there are stars in the universe”. We began the 250km journey, and asked why he was hitching, he explained that he needed to see a doctor about his new crutches and bath seat that were supposed to be delivered to him weeks ago. Arriving in Prince George, we asked him how he would be getting home, and we were astonished to hear that he would be hitching as he would not get his benefit until next week.
We offered him a ride. The next day, Ernie showed us the cemetery, in Stoney Creek, where his Great Grandmother was buried. Standing at the cemetery I felt a sadness deep within Ernie, as he could not remember where she was buried. After the cemetery he took us to visit the niece of Leon and Annie George, the daughter of a very well known medicine woman. As we drove through Fraser Lake, he pointed out where Lejac Residential School used to be.
On the way to Johnson Bay Landing Ernie told us many heart wrenching stories of his childhood. One in particular was when he and his family and friends used to walk 15 miles to school, until one day, a taxi driver felt sorry for them and gave them a ride to and from school every day.
After stopping at a place where his grandmother and grandfather used to live we continued our journey. He shared a funny story with us that they used to go to the movies at Johnson Bay, after the movies they would walk home. This road was nicknamed kissing lane, one can only imagine why it was given such a name. The following morning, we felt so inspired by his stories- we decided to cook breakfast for him. Over breakfast, we asked if he would like to have his book published, as we felt that the world needs to know what happened to him, and I am sure many other Indian people that attended all residential schools across Canada, from the middle of the 1800s to late 1900s.
Ernie agreed, and was very excited at the fact that we felt his story to be worthy of publishing. We now invite you to read the true story of Ernie Leon George, and how he survived Lejac Residential School.