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October 24, 2020
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We Remember: 12 Black children tragically drowned in the Laurentians (Canada).

In Spirit….

On July 13, 1954, 12 Black children tragically drowned in the Laurentians (Quebec, Canada).

They were part of a camping trip organized by the N.C.C. (Negro Community Center). There were 2 adults and 17 children on the 12-foot boat that sunk 200 yards offshore in the Lake of Two Mountains near Ile Bizard. Five of the 17 children were rescued.

Ruud van Empel - World (2005)Ruud van Empel - World (2005)Ruud van Empel - World (2005)Ruud van Empel - World (2005)

According to Montreal elder Bobby White, the councilors escorting the children could not swim. The children were: Margo Fonseca, 7, Marilyn Fonseca, 8, Carol Leek, 6, Alan Leek, 7, Paula Millington, 6, Denzil Alleyne, 9, Estelle Walton, 11, Leon Nealey, 8, Diane Springer, 10, Edwin Springer, 7, Brenda Kelley, 9, Doreen Walton, 8.

The drowning occurred July 13, 1954 at 1:15 pm. There are no memorials at this time in Montreal or Quebec marking this tragedy.

Additional source: http://coolopolis.blogspot.ca/2011/02/quiz-black-montreal-history-best-of.html

Paintings by Ruud van Empel from his series “World” (2005-2008)

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