Summarized by Eric Bunker
Farm tragedy rocks LDS family in Beaumont
Edmonton Alberta Canada Sun 15Nov99 P2
By Karen Decoux: Edmonton Sun
CHERRY GROVE, ALBERTA, CANADA -- Last Saturday, 14-year-old Melanie Edna
Morais, her older sister Cindy, 18 and Cindy's fiancee Lawrence Sidney Keen,
24, were all riding on a tractor on Keen's farm when the tractor rolled over
on a manure pile and crushed the threesome, killing Keen and Melanie
outright, and seriously injuring Cindy. The area is located about 290 km
northeast of Edmonton.
Brenda Morneau, a friend of Donald and Ginette Morais, Melanie's parents,
said, "They're Mormon and have strong family values. They're strong in
their faith. I think Ginette's having a hard time. Donald is trying to be
strong for his wife." The family has eight other children, ranging in age
from six to 27.
Jim Hatch, a fellow ward member who was involved in comforting Melanie's
girlfriend and her brother Greg, 16, who witnessed the accident said, "They
were just young kids - somebody that didn't have to see what they saw. The
one girl kept saying, 'She died in my arms,' " Hatch said.
Alberta Agriculture's farm safety specialist said he'll likely be heading to
Cherry Grove this week for an investigation. "It's very tragic. We've
probably had 14 fatalities or more this year on farms," Agent Gary Jones
said. "It's the most hazardous occupation in the country."
Lawrence Keen was described by a neighbor as a hard worker, very nice, and
very polite. He was trying to rebuild his parents' farm in preparation for
his marriage to Cindy.