Islands funeral association needs volunteers

Haida Gwaii’s newly formed funeral association is still looking for volunteer assistants.

Haida Gwaii’s newly formed funeral association is still looking for assistant volunteers.

Since the recent retirement of George Westwood, who provided funerary services on Haida Gwaii for 30 years, long-time assistant Matthew Pierce has taken on the role.

But Pierce will be retiring for health reasons at the end of November.

“We do have some people who have been training, but we still need assistants,” said Pierce, adding that the new association has a hearse and will soon have a morgue facility as well.

“It does look positive for handover, but we still need much more assistance, in various areas,” he said. Besides coroner-type services, the association needs people to help with everything from organizing services to preparing graves.

The next meeting of the Haida Gwaii Funeral Association is at noon this Saturday, Nov. 5 in the Queen Charlotte Youth Centre. For more information, phone Matthew Pierce at 250-559-8686.