Missing women cannot be forgotten, says Wolfe

Section: 
News

By Barb McKay

 

Angel Wolfe doesn’t think of her mother as a victim.

 

 

Angel Wolfe, left, and Bridget Perrier spoke at AIM Kincardine's event, Modern Slavery, to raise money for victims of human tracking, as well as to bring the issue to the public's attention. (Barb McKay photo)

 

 

The 18-year-old Aboriginal woman was a guest speaker at AIM Kincardine’s Modern Slavery event to generate public awareness around human trafficking. Wolfe attended with her adoptive mother and fellow speaker, Bridget Perrier. The two women have followed strikingly similar paths, which have intertwined several times over the past two decades.

 

The two women first met when Perrier began dating Wolfe’s father when she was five years old. It was while Perrier was dating Wolfe’s father that the girl’s biological mother, working in the sex trade industry in British Columbia, disappeared.

 

The couple parted ways and Wolfe’s father lost custody of her and her younger sister. Wolfe became a Crown ward and was place in a group home where she endured physical and sexual abuse.

 

Before long, Wolfe was placed in foster care with a Jewish family, that treated her well, but she missed her Aboriginal roots.

 

One day, two policemen showed up at the home. They sat down with Wolfe and told her that her mother’s DNA had been found in a pig trough on a farm in British Columbia.

 

“It was very nonchalant,” Wolfe said. “To this day I don’t like those police officers.”

 

The case became big news after Robert Pickton was arrested and Wolfe said the women who were identified were portrayed as low lifes. Because of her mother’s portrayal, Wolfe was teased mercilessly at school.

 

“I tried to run away from my heritage and my mother, and I grew to hate her,” she said.

 

Wolfe obsessively began clipping newspaper articles about the Pickton cases. She began using drugs and alcohol and started hanging out with a rough crowd. When her behaviour became too much for her foster parents to handle, Wolfe was sent to a group home. She ran away from the home several times, before making a decision to find her father.

 

Perseverance paid off and Wolfe found her father, who put her in touch with Perrier. With her help, Wolfe turned her life around and is learning to come to terms with her mother’s past and her death. Last fall, she received her mother’s remains and was able to bury her.

 

“Now I start a new journey and put the pieces together and learn to love my mother again,” she said. “I don’t think of her as a victim, but as a survivor to have been able to have gone through what she did.”

 

Wolfe has gone back to school and takes on speaking engagements with Sex Trade 101, along with several other organizations, to bring attention to missing women’s cases across Canada. She has also been actively involved with the missing women’s inquiry in Vancouver.

 

Both Perrier and Wolfe have been invited by Oprah to appear on one of her shows on the OWN network, when she films in Toronto at a yet to be determined date. To story of Perrier, who was a call girl at just 12-years-old, don't miss Barb McKay's story on the front page of this week's Kincardine Independent.