The first funerals, for Christian Head and Lana Head, took place Monday, with others following in the days after.
Darryl Burns, brother to Gloria Burns, whose funeral is scheduled for Tuesday, said he is looking for solace.
And while the community is remembering those lost, he also said the country should not forget the lessons learned during the attacks.
“All the resources that are coming into our community to help deal with this tragedy or to deal with the aftereffects of what’s going on, should be available to every (Indigenous) community across Canada,” he said.
He pointed to the racism First Nations people experience every day and the ongoing effects of residential schools, like addictions, as issues that need help and only now, during the tragedy, are receiving proper attention.
“I don’t know if you know how it is to walk into a store and, because you’re (First Nations)… they follow me around and make you feel like a criminal,” he said.
“It’s hard to live with that every day of your life.”
He said he hopes the compassion shown by people across the country remains intact and helps them see through the misconceptions of First Nations people, which he said are often taught in history books.
“Every history book that’s written by Europeans… is all one-sided,” he said, telling Global News this helps contribute to First Nations people not being understood, which contributes to racism.
That’s why he welcomes the outpouring of support, like from the Humboldt Broncos families.
A statement from the families of the players who died in 2018 called for “all Canadians who supported our HB families in 2018 to show the same level of compassion to their brothers and sisters from James Smith Cree Nation and Weldon.”
“We pray for healing and support and are prepared to walk with you in this journey of grief,” it concluded.
“My heart sank when I heard the words ‘mass casualties, code orange,’” Carol Brons, mother to Broncos athletic therapist Dayna Brons, said.
“It was kind of like, how can this be happening again?”
Brons said having the world watching you grieve makes the process more difficult. She wanted to reach out to offer what support they could.
Burns called the gesture “beautiful.”
He said he hopes that empathy is shared across the country and remains in place.