A legal battle is shaping up over the cremated remains of Millbrook elder Nora Bernard after they were removed from a cemetery amid plans to ship them to Winnipeg.
“These are clearly not the actions of a rational person,” said family lawyer Al Begin, regarding the move by Bernard’s daughter and estate executor, Gail Richardson.
“We’ll have to speak between the lawyers and go to court if necessary to have that dealt with.”
Richardson refused comment, but her sister, Natalie Gloade, said efforts will be made to keep her mother’s remains here and to have Richardson removed as estate executor.
“We’ll contest it,” she said of Richardson’s plans to have the marble monument and Bernard’s entombed ashes shipped to Winnipeg.
“We’ll have to get a judgment put in place to have it brought back.”
Bernard, a respected elder who successfully filed a first class-action lawsuit against the federal government on behalf of children who attended Indian residential schools, was killed in her home on Dec. 27, 2007. She was 72.
Her grandson, James Gloade, was sentenced last January to 15 years in prison for killing her while he was in a drug-induced state.
The death caused deep rifts in the family, with the latest episode taking place Monday evening when Millbrook RCMP received a complaint that Bernard’s ashes and monument had been removed from the local cemetery.
Cpl. Dave Lilly said police took possession of the monument until Tuesday morning when Richardson received permission from Nova Scotia’s Chief Medical Examiner to have it removed.
That includes permission to ship the monument out of the province.