Denis Carrier and Sandra Henry were together for about as long as anyone can remember, family members said this week.
Henry and Carrier, both 56, were identified as two of the victims of a triple homicide in Prince Albert’s west end over the weekend.
Also deceased is their seven-year-old grandson, Bentlee. Their five-year-old granddaughter, Kendrah, is recovering in an Edmonton hospital.
Their son Nathanial Carrier, 28, is facing three charges of first-degree murder and one charge of attempted murder.
Corrine Isbister is Henry’s cousin.
“I am as close a cousin to Sandy as you could have,” she said.
Her mother and Sandra’s mom were sisters. Her father and Sandra’s dad were brothers.
“We come from the same DNA.”
Isbister, Sherry McLennan and another cousin are doing what they can to help out Denis and Sandra’s other two boys.
One of the cousins met with the two brothers Wednesday night, they said. They were worried about paying their bills.
‘She said don’t worry about that right now. We’re going to take care of it,” Isbister said.
“They need support.”
That’s where McLennan, one of the cousins, comes in. She started a fundraising campaign to help cover some of the expenses faced by the Carrier boys. She’s also been taking e-transfers, with the hope of helping pay for some bills and whatever the boys need. So far, she’s raised over $4,000, mostly from friends and family.
“more than ever, we have to come together as family and support each other,” she said.
“We have to wrap our arms around those boys. They have a lot of extended family, cousins and aunties. We want the boys to know that they have a lot of support, even though we can’t go literally hug them and be there with them, our family does support them.”
‘She always had a smiling face’
McLennan and Isbister said Denis and Sandra were very private people, but that they’d been together for a long time.
“They were junior high sweethearts,” Isbister said.
“I just remember her and Denis being together all the time. I went to a baby shower for the little girl. Sandy put on a shower for her. She loved her grandchildren more than anything.”
“She always talked about her kids, her boys,” McLennan added. “Family to us is so huge. She had her three boys and two grandchildren. That was all she had.”
Denis liked to fish and hunt, McLennan and Isbister said. He worked in the trucking industry and “was always happy,” according to the Saskatoon StarPhoenix. Henry liked to joke around but was the more serious of the two.
Not only were Denis and Sandra close, but their families were also close too.
Sandra, Mclennan, Isbister and the other girls of the family grew up in the West Flat of Prince Albert. They all hung around together. Everyone had a name for everybody.
“(Sandra) always had a smiling face and always greeted everyone,” McLennan said.
“A big saying … was ‘’Hi Cuz!’ It’s always Cuz.”
McLennan’s second name is Ann. She remembers Sandra would come up to her and enthusiastically say “Hi Sherry ANNNNNN!
“She’d make that Ann go longer,” McLennan recalled with a smile.
Sandra’s friendliness continued on into her adult life, McLennan said. She worked at Sobeys, and then Co-Op, in customer service.
“A lot of her customers would come in and she’d know them personally and greet them. She loved working there. She was a very social person.”
“She was always happy,” Isbister added.
While the pandemic is keeping the families apart, as soon as they’re able, McLennan and Isbister said they would like to have a big family gathering and celebrate the lives of Denis and Sandra.
For now, though, they’ll do what they can.
‘We have to stay strong during this time,” McLennan said.
“Keep the faith, and support each other as much as we can.”
To donate to McLennan’s fundraiser, visit https://www.facebook.com/donate/2948555545224365/631098320771834/
Community remembering the family
By Thursday evening, a small memorial had popped up outside of Denis and Sandra’s house. A handful of bouquets, stuffed animals and handwritten notes were left in the snow.
“Thinking of you! Keeping all the good memories!” One note says.
“With much love,” another reads.
Community members have also been stepping up to support the mother of the Bentlee and Kendrah.
The gofundme was at $13,950 as of press time. It was created to contribute to funeral expenses for Bentlee, travel for the kids’ mom to visit her Kendrah in Edmonton and to put food on the table for her youngest son, Alex, who’s just 2.
So far, 207 donors have contributed.
The fundraiser was organized by Destiny Bradfield, the mother’s sister.
Bradfield and the mother have referred interview requests to the gofundme page.
The page describes Bentlee as “determined” from the moment he was born, prematurely, weighing just 3 lbs.
“From the minute he was born … he was brave,” the gofundme reads.
Kendrah is now stable. She has already endured three surgeries and been seen by medical teams in Prince Albert, Saskatoon and Edmonton.
“Like her brother, (Kendrah) is determined, and she is brave,” the gofundme says.
To contribute to that fundraiser, visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/for-heather-and-family
— With files from THia James, Saskatoon StarPhoenix