A Calgary man who is mourning the stabbing death of his 16-year-old son is speaking out in the hopes of stopping other young people from living on the streets.
Rob Beauregard described his son Eli Beauregard as an outdoorsy kid who liked to help the less fortunate.
“He was one of the happiest kids out there. He’s always had a smile on his face,” said Beauregard on Saturday. “He loved going fishing with me all the time.”
Eli had gone to Forest Lawn High School in Calgary and went to spend a few weeks in Kelowna with his mom in December 2018. He ended up moving out and living on the streets.
“I was offering help to him,” Beauregard said. “He said the youth shelter was helping him and he didn’t need me to run out and save him and he was doing what he wanted to be doing.”
On June 27, Eli had been out with a group of other people living on the streets when he was stabbed with a broken bottle, Beauregard said.
“His heart stopped and they were able to bring him back and get him stable enough to get him to the hospital. His heart stopped again at the hospital,” he said. “At that point, they were just trying to save his life — they weren’t trying to save his arm anymore.”
On June 30, he died at the hospital in his parents’ arms.
“It’s literally changed everything in my life. He was by my side always. It’s hard. Every minute is hard,” said Beauregard, choking back tears.
Beauregard is now trying to warn other young people about the potential perils of life on the streets.
“I just want to make sure that if there are any other teenagers out there that are going through some mental health issues or issues at home or at school and they are thinking that running away might be the answer that your life is precious and there are people out there willing to listen and help,” Beauregard said.
“There are programs out there that can help you through: the Boys and Girls clubs and youth shelters and other government programs.”
Beauregard doesn’t want to see another family feel the same pain his is going through. He has plans to start speaking at teen groups about Eli’s story to point out the help that is available.
A vigil is planned for Saturday at 9 p.m. at Calgary’s Robert McClure United Church. It is open to the public.
No arrests have been made in connection with Eli’s death and the investigation continues.