Hundreds came out for the second Walk for the Children in Penticton. The journey of 6,000 steps from the Peach to the residential school survivor memorial on the Penticton Indian Band represents the 6,000 children whose bodies were discovered in unmarked graves at residential schools in 2021. (Logan Lockhart - Western News)

VIDEO: Hundreds come out to Walk for the Children in Penticton

“We’re honouring the residential school survivors and those who didn’t make it home”: Penticton Chief

The second National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in Penticton brought out hundreds, Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike, to Walk for the Children.

It was a sea of orange shirts near the Penticton Peach for the start of the walk.

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel, local Elders, and survivors of the residential school system spoke ahead of the walk’s departure.

“We’re honouring the residential school survivors you see here…these warriors, these strong, determined people that are still with us and that we love so much for what they’ve been through,” Gabriel said alongside the survivors. “But we want to also honour those who never made it home.”

READ MORE:Hundreds join walk to recognize Truth and Reconciliation in Penticton

The first walk in 2021 was an impromptu affair that still brought out around 200 people to make the journey from the Peach to the Syilx Okanagan Nation’s Residential School Survivor Memorial on Penticton Indian Band Land.

The five-kilometre walk is equivalent to 6,000 steps in recognition of the over 6,000 children whose bodies were discovered in unmarked graves at the sites of former residential schools during the summer of 2021.

The residential school survivor memorial on Penticton Indian Band land is located where many parents were forced to bring their children to before they were taken away by train to either the Kamloops or Cranbrook residential schools.

READ MORE: Here’s how Penticton plans on recognizing National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Following the walk, a Celebration of Indigenous Culture and Resiliency is taking place at Gyro Park from 1 p.m. until 6, including Indigenous dances, drumming, singing, arts and crafts and an acknowledgment of the day.

Hundreds came out for the second Walk for the Children in Penticton. The journey of 6,000 steps from the Peach to the residential school survivor memorial on the Penticton Indian Band represents the 6,000 children whose bodies were discovered in unmarked graves at residential schools in 2021. (Logan Lockhart - Western News)

Hundreds came out for the second Walk for the Children in Penticton. The journey of 6,000 steps from the Peach to the residential school survivor memorial on the Penticton Indian Band represents the 6,000 children whose bodies were discovered in unmarked graves at residential schools in 2021. (Logan Lockhart - Western News)

Chief Greg Gabriel of the Penticton Indian Band and local survivors of the residential school system spoke as part of the second Walk for the Children in Penticton. (Logan Lockhart - Western News)

Chief Greg Gabriel of the Penticton Indian Band and local survivors of the residential school system spoke as part of the second Walk for the Children in Penticton. (Logan Lockhart - Western News)

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