How this Kelowna family is memorializing mother who died in Big White ski accident | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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How this Kelowna family is memorializing mother who died in Big White ski accident

Chantelle Marcellus with her mother Carrie Koski who died in a skiing accident at Big White in January, 2021.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Chantelle Marcellus
March 10, 2021 - 7:00 AM

After the deaths of her mother and brother, a Kelowna nurse will be walking from Penticton to Vernon to raise money for youth addictions services.

Chantelle Marcellus and her brothers Andrew and Gered Marcellus, lost their mom Carrie Koski in a ski accident at Big White Ski Resort in January 2021. Their younger brother Mathew died of a fentanyl overdose in 2016.

Chantelle will walk and cycle the Okanagan valley to raise money for The Bridge Youth & Family Services and may be joined by her brothers, if the stars align, she said.

Beginning on April 30, she will visit each hospital from Penticton to Vernon, and light a candle at each location.

READ MORE: Woman skiing at Big White Ski Resort died on weekend

Chantelle said after her brother's death her mom, an intensive care nurse, would encourage her to go for a hike to find herself. Her mom was also her inspiration to became an ICU nurse. She decided to walk in her honour. 

"One of the other drives in myself and my brothers completing this walk together is also because we were not able to have a service for our mom due to COVID and that left us feeling a bit awkward in our goodbye so I think that was another contributing factor as well," she said.

This summer the family has planned to bike along the Kettle Valley Rail Trail, so Chantelle will start off by using the trail to cycle from the Penticton Hospital to Kelowna, then walk from the Kelowna to Vernon.

To avoid walking in the dark, she’ll split the journey into a few days and will rest in Lake Country or Kelowna if she needs to.

Chantelle will document her journey, called Carrie’s Cause, through her Facebook event page.

Her mom was a part of Moms Stop the Harm so she'll be collecting donations to help fund treatment beds for The Bridge.

“We don’t have a lot of resources for youth. In my own personal nursing career, I find there’s a huge gap," she said. "We can save their life, but where do they go after that? A lot of the time it’s back to abusive families."

To keep up to date with Chantelle's journey check out the Facebook event page here.

To make a donation to The Bridge Youth & Family Services, go here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Carli Berry or call 250-864-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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