By Lethbridge Herald on February 9, 2016.
Family and friends of Frances â€œCandyâ€ Little Light gathered on Tuesday evening to remember the woman with â€œa heart of goldâ€ whose life was tragically taken on the weekend.
Many of her closest friends, and at least 20 relatives from Siksika Nation, joined hands to pray outside the apartment building where Candy was found murdered.
â€œI donâ€™t want her to be another statistic. A lot of aboriginals are being murdered and going missing,â€ said Flora Royal, Candyâ€™s foster sister, who organized the vigil. â€œItâ€™s heart-wrenching with no closure. Thatâ€™s one of the most devastating things that a person goes through when your family member gets murdered…â€
On Sunday, at around 5:15 p.m., police and EMS responded to a report of a severely injured female in an apartment complex along the 100 block of Columbia Boulevard West.
Emergency responders located the 56-year-old in her apartment, and a short time later she was pronounced dead.
Her death was officially ruled a homicide following an autopsy that was completed in Calgary on Tuesday. The cause of her death is not being released at this time.
Several people from the apartment were detained for questioning and a search of the area was conducted by the K9 Unit, however, there are no suspects in custody.
Family members are pleading for someone to come forward.
â€œThey canâ€™t hide forever. Sooner or later theyâ€™ll be found,â€ said Candyâ€™s oldest sister, Karen Little Light. â€œWeâ€™re pleading for this person or people that have done this to our family that we are very hurt and distraught and going through so much anguish. Our hearts are just broken. We just want this to end.â€
Children held signs at the vigil that read â€œCandy Little Light â€” We Want Justice,â€ to remember the woman who was a â€œsister, mother, auntie, grandmother and friend.â€
A heart-shaped banner spelling out â€œAuntie Candyâ€ laid in front of a tree outside the apartment. Everyone held hands in prayer, hoping for swift justice.
Candy is described by loved ones as â€œopen, honest, caring, giving and loving.â€
â€œShe would do anything and everything for anybody, right down to giving the shirt off her back. Even if it was just sitting and talking with a person or giving them a hug for comfort,â€ said Karen.
Candy struggled through life, and even though she had a downfall with an addiction, she fought to get back on her feet, Karen said.
â€œShe was trying to get her life back on track, back to stabilizing in a direction to work with people again and to work in the community.â€
Candy had no biological children, but treated her nieces and nephews as if they were hers, said Royal. In fact, Candy helped raise several of them.
Candy also obtained a degree from the University of Lethbridge in social work, and formerly worked with native counselling.
â€œWhen she graduated from the U of L she was very proud,â€ said Della Little Light, Candyâ€™s younger sister. â€œWe told her â€˜mom is happy in heaven.â€™ Weâ€™ll always remember our sister. She was everything to us and whoever did this to our sister, we want justice. We want justice for our sister.â€
Royal, who had known Candy since she was 12 years old, said it was important to bring family together to help each other during this difficult time.
â€œWe need the support, just the way that she died. It would be different if it was through illness but (she died) so tragically,â€ said Royal. â€œShe had a life. She wasnâ€™t always what people perceived her to be, like a nobody. She had a life.â€
Funeral arrangements for Candy have not yet been made, but the family hopes to bring her to rest at Siksika.
It is the second homicide in Lethbridge in the last three weeks.
Police are continuing to conduct interviews and pursue other avenues of investigation.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Lethbridge police at 403-328-4444 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.