‘I’m overwhelmed’: Community rallies behind mother grieving Penticton homicide victim

Click to play video: 'Investigators plead for witnesses to come forward in Taig Savage death' Investigators plead for witnesses to come forward in Taig Savage death
A small memorial has been set up near the Penticton Secondary School sports field in memory of Taig Savage-- the 22-year-old victim of a homicide on Labour Day weekend. As Shelby Thom reports, friends and family are remembering the young man as outgoing, caring and hardworking, as investigators plead for witnesses to come forward – Sep 15, 2021

The mother of a young homicide victim in Penticton, B.C., says she is overwhelmed by the support from her small town as she grieves the sudden loss of her son.

Taig Savage, 22, was killed in a swarming attack in the early hours of Sept. 5 on the sports field behind Penticton Secondary School.

His mother, Tracey Savage, said she can’t speak to the specifics of the case to protect the integrity of the murder investigation, but believes “there was definitely more than one person involved.”

Read more: Penticton homicide victim, 22, fondly remembered by friends and family

The grieving mother is urging witnesses to come forward and speak to police. As of Sept. 21, no arrests have been made.

“We’re always interested in new leads and new footage or anything that will help the case,” Savage told Global News.

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“So anything at all that anyone can bring forward. Little or small, or they think it’s important that we all work together as a community to try and bring whoever is responsible to justice.”

Friends and family have launched a GoFundMe page to help cover the costs of a memorial and businesses have donated to a raffle draw.

“I’m overwhelmed with the support that I’ve received,” she said.

Tracey Savage pictured with her son, Taig, when he was a baby. The 22-year-old was the victim of a homicide in Penticton, B.C., on Sunday, Sept. 5, 2021. Submitted

Savage owns a small cafe in Summerland called Just Hazel. Young employees have worked extra hours with their parents supervising to keep the small business open.

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Read more: Witness describes finding body at Penticton, B.C. school field

“I had people come in and put up shelving that I needed and did work to my actual restaurant that I had had, you know, looked into getting done,” she said.

It isn’t the first tragedy she has endured.

Click to play video: 'Young man’s body found at Penticton high school' Young man’s body found at Penticton high school
Young man’s body found at Penticton high school – Sep 5, 2021

Savage said she has a big family with 11 children. Two of her kids, aged three and 18 months, died in a motel fire on Nov. 29, 1988, she said.

“The fire was immense and we were told would never find out the cause.”

More than three decades later, Taig was killed.

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“His legacy is that he lived every day to its fullest,” Savage said.

Read more: Police working to identify deceased man who was found injured in Penticton school field

“He was happy-go-lucky. He was an amazing kid in the sense that he didn’t judge people and therefore, it didn’t matter what you wore, what you look like, or who you were what your story was, he accepted you with face value and no judgment.”

Taig Savage was a graduate of Princess Margaret Secondary and attended Okanagan College in the construction trades program.

He previously worked at Zias Stonehouse Restaurant in Summerland and grew up in the South Okanagan.

Taig Savage. RCMP

“He also was a community member and he had friends and he went to school here and these people are grieving his loss as well,” she said.

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Police have remained tight-lipped about the homicide, saying only that Penticton RCMP were called to assist BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS) with an unresponsive person at a field located in the 100 block of Eckhart Avenue.

The man sustained critical injuries and was transported to a local area hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

If anyone has information or witnessed this incident, they are asked to contact the Penticton RCMP at 250-492-4300.

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