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

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson outlines the province’s three-year budget in Victoria, April 20, 2021. (B.C. government video)
B.C. deficit to grow by $19 billion for COVID-19 recovery spending

Pandemic-year deficit $5 billion lower than forecast

A syringe is loaded with COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
67 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Thirty people in the region are hospitalized with the virus, 11 of whom are intensive care

A Quesnel resident receives a shot of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine earlier this month. (Photo credit: Cassidy Dankochik/Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
IH says COVID-19 vaccines safe despite claims of Lytton physician

Doctor makes unsubstantiated claims about serious side effects of Moderna vaccine

People are shown at a COVID-19 vaccination site in Montreal, Sunday, April 18, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
211 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health over the weekend

Currently, there are 875 active cases of the virus in the region

A nurse prepares a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. As of April 19, more than 230,000 doses have been administered across the Interior Health region. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press)
More than 230K doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered across Interior Health

A total of 220,216 first doses and 13,775 second doses have been given to residents across the B.C. Interior

FILE – NDP Leader John Horgan, right, and local candidate Mike Farnworth greet one another with an elbow bump during a campaign stop in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday, September 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. won’t be using random individual road stops to enforce travel rules: Safety Minister

Minister Mike Farnworth says travel checks only being considered at major highway junctions, ferry ports

A man pauses at a coffin after carrying it during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. announces historic half-billion-dollar funding for overdose crisis, mental health

Of it, $152 million will be used to address the opioid crisis and see the creation of 195 new substance use treatment beds

Children’s backpacks and shoes are seen at a CEFA (Core Education and Fine Arts) Early Learning daycare franchise, in Langley, B.C., on Tuesday May 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. budget to expand $10-a-day child care, but misses the mark on ‘truly universal’ system

$111 million will be used to fund 3,750 new $10-a-day spaces though 75 additional ChildCareBC universal prototype sites over the next three years.

Mak Parhar speaks at an anti-mask rally outside the Vancouver Art Gallery on Sunday, Nov. 1, 2020. Parhar was arrested on Nov. 2 and charged with allegedly violating the Quarantine Act after returning from a Flat Earth conference held in Geenville, South Carolina on Oct. 24. (Flat Earth Focker/YouTube.com screenshot)
Judge tosses lawsuit of B.C. COVID-denier who broke quarantine after Flat Earth conference

Mak Parhar accused gov, police of trespass, malfeasance, extortion, terrorism, kidnapping and fraud

Ambulance paramedic in full protective gear works outside Lion’s Gate Hospital, March 23, 2020. Hospitals are seeing record numbers of COVID-19 patients more than a year into the pandemic. (The Canadian Press)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate declines, 849 cases Tuesday

Up to 456 people now in hospital, 148 in intensive care

Christy Clark, who was premier from 2011 to 2017, is the first of several present and past politicians to appear this month before the Cullen Commission, which is investigating the causes and impact of B.C.’s money-laundering problem over the past decade. (Darryl Dyck/Canadian Press)
Christy Clark says she first learned of money-laundering spike in 2015

The former B.C. premier testified Tuesday she was concerned the problem was ‘apparently at an all-time high’

Most Read