The Life of a Curious Girl

I am only me and I have nothing to offer but myself. Whether that is a great thing or a trivial thing is really up to you to decide...

Monday, October 25, 2004

Heather Thomas

This post is going to be my closure on this subject. I never really had any because of the craziness of what went on and everything...

Well first off I'll tell this is the story from my point of view and then later I'll say what the news said.

Okay, it was October 1st, 2000 and everything was really normal. Everyone was playing outside like usual. I saw Heather outside with her friends (that were also friends of mine) and everything was fine. That is, until about four/five o'clock or so, when Heather went missing. Folks (friends/neighbors and everything) were coming to our door to ask us if we'd seen Heather. I hadn't except that few seconds that morning, which I can still remember pretty clearly. Well, that night everyone was REALLY, REALLY worried. I was so scared for her, even if I didn't know her very well. But I was also sure that this would all blow over and she'd be found. After all, this doesn't happen here, not to our little community, not to anyone I knew. It didn't blow over and after I came back to school from the weekend, I found my teacher looking slighty fatigued, but also relieved. Once he had heard that someone from our general area had been abducted, he went straight to see if it was one of us. What a sweet guy he was, he was a great teacher too. (Thanks Mr.R, if you somehow miraculously are reading this!). Noone could find Heather, everyone was terribly worried and almost all the parents participated in the search parties to look for her. Noone could find her and noone had seen her since she disapeered from riding her bike that day. Everyone helped out, there were lots of donations, the media had lots of coverage. Everyone was doing what they could.

Three weeks later, they found her. Dead in Alouette Lake. It was horrible, devastating for our little neighborhood. The man who did it was Shane Ertmoed, 24. He was really friendly and was always working on his green car outside. I never thought he (or anyone in our neighborhood!) would ever do something like this. He tried to sexually assult her and then strangled her. He confessed then retracted his confession. He got a life sentance with no parole for 25 years. I, personally, think he shouldn't get parole at all, ever. And you can be sure that when he is eligable for parole, I'll be writing major letters to make sure he isn't allowed. He did a horrible, horrible thing. And it didn't just effect Heather and her family, it effected everyone who heard about it, but especially in our little neighborhood. My little brother and sister still can't go out of my parents sight because of it. And after that incident noone went outside by themselves or with their friends because it was just too scary, too big a risk to take. It's devastating to have this happen in your neighborhood to someone you know. I remember for about 4 months afterwards I slept in my parents room on the floor because I could not sleep bymyself or with my sister in our room. I was afraid Ertmoed was going to come and get me (not only because of Heather, but because of an incident that happened before she went missing). Sometimes I still have nightmares about him, and it's four freakin' years later. I don't know why this affected me as much as it did, maybe because I was older than my siblings (I was eleven), and I understood a lot better. I probably should have gotten councelling when my parents/school suggested it, but I was a stubborn little thing.

I think the scariest thing about this all was knowing it could have been me, or friend who lives next door, or my little sister. I wouldn't even be here today and that scares me.


B.C. man found guilty of Heather Thomas murder
Last Updated Fri, 30 Aug 2002 22:21:53


VANCOUVER - A Vancouver jury convicted Shane Ertmoed of first-degree murder Thursday in the death of 10-year-old Heather Thomas.

Ertmoed, 24, now faces a maximum life sentence without parole eligibility for 25 years. The jury deliberated only five hours.

Calling the crime "horrific," Justice Wally Oppal of the B.C. Supreme Court said a first-degree conviction meant the jury believed Ertmoed intended and carried out Heather's murder, along with sexual assault.


FROM NOV 4, 2001: Neighbours react to arrest in B.C. girl's murder

After the verdict, Ertmoed told the court there had been a "miscarriage of justice."

"You murdered a 10-year-old child just to satisfy your own sexual desire," responded the judge.

In an earlier confession, Ertmoed said he strangled the young girl and dumped her body in a lake. He later retracted the confession, claiming the RCMP manipulated him.

But the Crown prosecutor urged the jury to convict Ertmoed because in his confession, he appeared to know too many details of the crime.

Heather disappeared Oct. 1, 2000, at her father's suburban neiborhood. Ertmoed lived nearby.

Her body was discovered 21 days later in a lake.


Written by CBC News Online staff


Heather

That's 10 year old Heather ^

She never got to grow up, get married, have kids or do anything like that because of some sick guy. I never, ever wanted to have the death penatly before and still don't, but that was one of times I wished they did have that in Canada. I don't wish him to die anymore, that would be too light a punishment for him. He needs to rot in jail for the rest of his life and think every day what he did and why he did it, and about all the pain he caused.

Well, I feel a lot better now that I've gotten that off my chest. *sigh*

33 Comments:

At April 20, 2009 at 12:29 PM, Blogger Roundhead said...

hello - not sure if you are still keeping this blog...

I appreciate your personal testimony on the loss of your acquaitance. I urge you from this remove (ie. 2009), to keep your promise and write letters to the parole board when this Ertmoed individual comes up for parole (which can be in as little as ten years, if he becomes eligible for the `faint hope' clause).

thanks from the father of a young daughter...

 
At June 16, 2010 at 3:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hhen Shane Ertmoed is released from prison will get taken care of by the Hells Angels. He will meet a far more violent death then Heather, that is a promise.

 
At June 16, 2010 at 3:42 AM, Anonymous protective overlord said...

shane is gonna get sliced up and fed to satan.

 
At July 24, 2010 at 5:43 PM, Anonymous Meagan Gallicano said...

It's been almost ten years. A decade, since an innocent little girl with hopes and dreams, my friend was taken
from us. Heather is in my thoughts frequently, and it astounds me as to where the time has gone. With memories so clear, it seems as though it was yesterday.

It was October 1, 2001, exactly one week before my
tenth birthday. The last day I saw my friend. Interview after interview, and day after day, I told my story. It still pains me to this day to think that I was one of, if not the last person to see her alive. For years, I fought internal battles, and repressed guilt. "If only I'd stayed with her for ten more minutes, she could still be alive today." Thoughts like these were constant recurrances in my every day life.

It wasn't until the day that I sat in that courtroom, looked Mr. Ertmoed, friend turned monster, in the eyes and was able to help put him behind bars, that I won that battle. The war I was fighting, for Heather.

I have since grown up. Graduated from high school, finished portions of my post secondary schooling, and experienced new friendships, first loves, first jobs. Things Heather never had the chance to experience. This
coming October, I will be twenty years old, and a decade will have passed since I lost one of my closest friends. Since the world lost one of its angels.

Make it known, that when that monster is up for parole, I will be the first person in line to keep him where he deserves to be, and to finish what I started - making him pay.

Heather, we all love you and miss you dearly. Rest in peace, friend.

 
At December 3, 2010 at 5:23 PM, Anonymous stories dog sex said...

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I coughed not wanting to be left out in all this. He is really looking forward to Egypt at the start and end of the tour,as am I.

 
At December 20, 2010 at 10:58 PM, Blogger Granny Smith said...

The last two comments, posted Dec. 3/10, are very offensive. They obviously are written by someone (possibly the same person) with nothing better to do than make sick, idiotic comments on a blog dedicated to a 10-year girl who was murdered.

You should be ashamed of yourself. I am.

Get a life.

 
At February 20, 2011 at 2:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am truly sorry for the loss of this precious life. I went to school with Shane and knew him somewhat and was shocked to hear what happened. He was always a bit odd and I could tell he had some anger issues but I never thought he could do something this horrific. There is absolutely no excuse. My heart goes out to the families and friends who have had to live without this beautiful little girl and I can only pray that you find comfort and healing in the years to come.

 
At March 21, 2011 at 9:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would just like to say that i am so sorry this had to happen to Heather, a very beautiful girl; i am a mother of a young girl, and we as a community have to worry about this all the time; i hope to god that this guy does not get bail; it makes me so angry and upset that he took "Heather" in such a way, there is no forgiveness for someone that comitts a crime like that (sick asshole); Rest in Paridise Heather Thomas

 
At October 6, 2011 at 1:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Indeed this was a very sad time in our complex. She is in my thoughts frequently. With 2 daughters, it was a very intimidating time for me.
Southbeldixie

 
At January 13, 2012 at 9:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for doing this blog. We lived in that complex at that time. Our daughter was playing with Heather just before she was taken. That could have just as easily been our daughter. We had to move away beacause our daughter couldn't stay there anymore. Our thoughts are always with you Heather. Peace.

 
At March 1, 2012 at 12:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We still remember that awful time Cloverdale faced when Heather was taken. Being the father of a 16 y/o girl now, I can't imagine having lost her 10 years ago and not seeing what she would become... My heart goes out to the family still suffering today.

 
At June 24, 2012 at 12:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

my sister rosie was her best friend this was so horrible i was only 7 when this happened we live in the townhouse right beside hers :( so sad ,,what a loser

 
At August 18, 2012 at 4:25 AM, Blogger Vincent said...

oh my god that is horrible :(

 
At September 2, 2012 at 9:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here here ..

 
At September 2, 2012 at 9:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ditto

 
At October 22, 2012 at 2:04 PM, Anonymous Anne-Marie said...

I was one of Heathers best friends, her and I would ride bikes some of the days in the complex where she lived with her mom. I still miss her from today. she would of been an adult. Miss you heather.

 
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At July 5, 2013 at 6:58 PM, Anonymous ashleigh said...

Heather was my sisters best friend it was so horroble when this happend we lived right beside her in the complex ...i hope this guy dies before he gets parole...my sister always blamed herself becauss heather had asked her just a couple hours before if she wanted to go with her to her dads...to this day she still blames herself ...i was about 7 when this happend so it was very upsetting for me to see my sister and heathers family so upset ...this guy deserved death i cant even say his name as it discusts me just thinking about it ...love you heather R.I.P <3

 
At July 5, 2013 at 6:59 PM, Anonymous ashleigh said...

Do you remember rosie and ashleigh ? Rosie says she remembers you

 
At January 23, 2014 at 7:54 PM, Anonymous JP Davidson said...

I live in Kelowna and we all remember the abduction and then murder of Heather and the good work of the RCMP in this case. My heart and prayers go out to her family on the saddest and most tragic loss of their little girl Heather.
Thankfully Shane Ertmoed was caught and cannot hurt anymore precious little angels in this world.

 
At March 4, 2014 at 9:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So sad. The violence people have gone through with murderers. Don't blame yourselves. Things happen for reasons even if we don't understand it. RIP little one. ...

 
At March 7, 2014 at 7:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wishing you and everyone involved in this tragedy, peace and healing.

 
At March 24, 2014 at 11:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember this very clearly when it happened. Then years later I was working and realized I was working with Shanes brothers. This guy sounds like he is on a holiday he is a grounds keeper at the prison he is in. the brothers are always joking about driving by high schools looking for young girls, I was so thrown off on this I had to leave my job. These two brothers both moved back to that area they each live with in blocks of that town house complex. When you hear this and then hear all the talk from them it is totally gross how the system works. This family should be ashamed, not glorified about it. I was nerves when my little sister had to pick me up at work how they looked at her. Please stick to your word and fight his parole.

 
At July 31, 2014 at 3:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is that the rumors you want to spread about his brothers?
You have no idea what the other side goes thru. Yes this was a horrible horrible thing that happened. Shane is not in prison living the dream. He is getting the help that he never received all those years ago. Society failed him, like it fails so many others. It is not a holiday at prison. He works and goes to school and is trying to get as much help as he can.
How dare you say that we (the family) have not been affected by this...you have no idea what we have gone thru.

 
At August 10, 2014 at 9:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your right no one knows what your family goes through BUT no one cares. Not once did you ever mention what Heather went through or her parents, siblings. The community was devastated. I remember it like yesterday. Shane was 24 an adult. He knew he had some sick perversion so why didn't he get help. When he hurt Heather why didn't he call 911. Your denial of the co-workers comments and feelings towards Shane's brothers is so telling. If your family was so affected by this criminal behaviour the family members especially brothers would be a little more sensitive to their actions. Prison in Canada is not all that bad.....Shane gets to live, breathe, eat, oh yeah get an education......and as to his false sense of entitlement.....of "society failed him". Let me address his me me me syndrome. He Shane an adult raping and murdering a child Heather Thomas.....Shane failed Society. I never knew the little girl but I remember her like yesterday. I will be at any hearing as many in Society will to make sure this sicko Shane never steps outside prison walls.....maybe Dr Charlambous another sicko cell mate can share a forever cage......along with the sicko who murder the Cameron girl in white rock.....society is fed up with the mentality of no shame, no remorse and no victim accountability

 
At February 11, 2015 at 2:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

fuck you shane as well as the etmoed family

 
At February 14, 2015 at 1:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rot in prision. I hope that if he ever gets out it will only be for minutes....

 
At November 3, 2015 at 9:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a relative of Heather. I remember those days like it was yesterday. It was as if we were all living in the worst nightmare you can imagine. None of us are the same, and I dare say that none of us have recovered. I was never a fan of the death penalty until that day. I think Shane Ertmode should be executed. I couldn't give a flying fuck about how this affects his family. He is alive. Heather is not. He doesn't deserve to live for what he did. Trust me, the Ertmode family hasn't gone through a fraction of what we have. I hope the prison system does us all a favor and lets him into the general prison population and let the prisoners serve out real justice...

 
At July 13, 2016 at 3:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heather was my best friend and I remember like it was yesterday it had a profound effect on my life and will forever. My friend was taken in the most horrible way and at ten years old it was shocking to find out this kind of stuff happens in the world. My family was close with Jody Heathers mom during the whole trial. I don't think shane will ever get out but he is applying for early parole so I encourage everyone to write a letter as I will. If he does get out his fate will he far worse then hers there will be a line to get to him hundreds of people long. Katherine.

 
At July 23, 2016 at 11:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somehow I've found myself here on this page, reading each comment that has been posted and sitting now with a much heavier heart than when I began to read. I am deeply saddened about the loss of Heather and the most tragic manner of her death, I pray for her family, th community and all who have been affected by Heathers death, a death mr ertmoed undeniably caused. Mothers and fathers never think they will bury their children it's supposed to be the oth way around So many losses heathers family has faced, all of their hopes and dreams for their daughter now shattered never to be realized. The toll this type of grief causes among a family is deep, cuts to the core the pain unbearable. I pray the family can find peace within and continue living to honor heathers short life. It hurts me inside to know such a grave tragedy has occurred and has caused so very much harm. I am not angry only saddened. Saddened to read all the hate and bitterness in these comments which can only be self serving and clearly does not assist the family to come to peace.

I've been through this type of trauma, the untimely in humane death of my first born son , later the murder of my nephew my sisters only son , sexual assault I've been through it all I know the grief the pain intimately. The fellow who murdered my nephew is now out on parole. I hope he makes it our family hopes he makes it. We choose a path of healing rather than to keep hurting ourselves with anger, hate, bitterness and disgust. We wanted to heal so we could better live and honour our family members we loved and lost. We participated in victim offender mediation and to our surprise this process relieved us of a great weight we'd been caring It helped us to better understand how someone could take the live of another how sick they were. It was a blessing and today we live in tact and in peace

The ertmoed family has been deeply hurt too and for them I also pray I pray for mr ertmoed's brothers that they can live in peace and not under the constant shadow of what their brother did . I pray for mr ertmoed's mother and can't imagine the pain she too must have gone thru and likely continues to go thru. I have never met a mother or father whose hopes and dreams for their child included the murder and sexual assault of a child.

I encourage all who comment to move beyond the easy stuff...the hate... The disgust...throw away the key thinking. We have to change as a society to heal as one, to help one another to heal. Of course heather did not deserve to die or to experience such a violent death yet it happened. No amount of bitterness or anger can change that or bring her back. It's hard yes it's very hard yet it's only through love that we heal

 
At August 5, 2016 at 4:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember this well as i had just given birth to my son on Oct 2, 2000 I named him Shayne. When the new came out about this sick monster, I felt like changing his name. My saving grace was his was spelt Shayne not Shane. But it still stung when i heard the name on the news.
From what i hear he was hoping for an early parole hearing six months ago (Dec 2015). I urge those who have voiced their strong opinions and emotions to keep vigilant and write those letters and appear at those hearings or this will be another high risk offender out on the streets again.

 
At September 18, 2016 at 10:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shane lived next door to us with his parents in Vernon I have a daughter that was the same age lucky me.Shane I hope you never get out.

 

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