The reach of the protests and violence in the U.S. doesn't stop at the Canadian border according to one man's story. Sadly, a B.C. school principal lost his family in a Chicago protest. He's now in mourning but still urges everyone to stand up against anti-black racism.
Middle school principal and football coach Dionte Jelks told Narcity he was "tired" in an interview on Saturday, June 6.
"I'm very tired. You know, just going through the entire process. It weighs on my mind heavily, weighs on my heart," he said.
On Sunday, May 31, Jelks got a phone call from his sister and learned his brother and cousin, Darius and Maurice Jelks, were killed in their car while waiting at a stop sign. They were 32 and 39, respectively.
"At the stop sign, it was chaos. There's looting, people running back and forth across the street," said Jelks. "They're just trying to navigate back to my mom's house and they were murdered."
"They have no clue who did it."
Jelks said his sister was "frantically crying, saying my brother and my cousin got shot up real bad," he said.
"I just sat on a log and put my hands on my face. My wife comforted me and you know, I just sat there for an hour in disbelief. I couldn't move. I was just numb."
Jelks is the principal of Ladysmith Intermediate School in a small town on Vancouver Island. He's also a beloved football coach of the Victoria Spartans.
He described his brother as "bubbly" and a hard worker. His cousin had just started a new job and purchased a home.
"It is senseless. All senseless."
"I think everybody should be at a protest. Not just, you know, black people," said Jelks.
"I fully support the protests. I just choose to protest in a different way," he said.
"I choose to educate the youth, through sports, through education. And that's my process to show them that hey, you know, I'm black, I'm a male."
"And you know, I can make a difference in the community."