Thursday, 01 April 2010 11:08
Signed statement by survivor witness followed by copy of letter already given to the Queen in January, 2008 by residential school survivors in Canada.Statement of William Arnold Combes
I am an Interior Salish spirit dancer and am 58 years old. I live in Vancouver, Canada.
I am a survivor of the Kamloops and Mission Indian residential schools, both run by the Roman Catholic church. I suffered terrible tortures there at the hands especially of Brother Murphy, who killed at least two children. I witnessed him throw a child off a three story balcony to her death. He put me on a rack and broke some of my bones, in the Kamloops school basement, after I tried running away.
I also saw him and another priest burying a child in the school orchard one night.
In September 1964 when I was 12 years old, I was an inmate at the Kamloops school and we were visited by the Queen of England and Prince Phillip. I remember it was strange because they came by themselves, no big fanfare or nothing. But I recognized them and the school principal told us it was the Queen and we all got given new clothes and good food for the first time in months the day before she arrived.
The day she got to the school, I was part of a group of kids that went on a picnic with the Queen and her husband and school officials, down to a meadow near Dead Man’s Creek. After awhile, I saw the Queen leave that picnic with ten children from the school, and those children never returned. We never heard anything more about them and never saw them again even when we were older. They were all from around there but they all vanished.
The group that disappeared was seven boys and three girls, in age from six to fourteen years old. I don’t remember their names, just an occasional first name like Cecilia and there was an Edward.
What happened was also witnessed by my friend George Adolph, who was 11 years old at the time and a student there too
__________ _______ __
William Arnold Combes
(signed and witnessed in the original)
February 3, 2010
Updated September 8, 2022:
Well well well… things are about to get a whole lot more interesting.