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'Broken-hearted': Montrealers march in honour of teenage violence victims


Lynne Baudouy says the last four weeks have been the hardest of her life after her son, Lucas Gaudet, was stabbed during an altercation outside St. Thomas High School in Pointe-Claire, in Montreal's West Island, on Feb. 8.

He was brought to hospital, where he later died. He was 16 years old.

“I wouldn’t wish it on any parent to have to lose their child in such a violent, tragic way,” she said.

Baudouy spent her Saturday marching down Park Avenue in Montreal, alongside family and friends, to mourn the loss of her son and reckon with a troubling streak of violence in the city, leaving several minors dead since the beginning of 2021.

That list includes Amir Benayad, 17, who was shot to death in the Plateau neighbourhood in January; Jannai Dopwell Bailey, 16, who was stabbed and killed last November; Thomas Trudel, 16, who was killed the same month and Meriem Boundaoui, 15, who was shot in a drive-by in February 2021.

Gaudet’s death sent shockwaves throughout the West Island.

Many were left “broken-hearted,” according to Nicole Demers, whose son played hockey with Gaudet. She says he had visited her house with friends just days before the incident.

“You can’t fix a broken heart overnight. It’s the worst nightmare a mother, a parent, could feel,” she said.

While families and friends grieve, Gaudet's friends say they feel unsafe at school.

“We shouldn’t need to lose kids’ lives at this age, it’s just not right,” said one of Gaudet’s best friends, Aiden Landry, carrying a sign that read STOP YOUTH VIOLENCE.

“People think it’s cool to act violent and aggressive,” said another member of Gaudet’s closest circle, Samuel Mariampillai, who spoke to CTV News as he put a comforting arm around Landry.

“This is somebody that we have memories with. This is somebody who had family. This is a real, breathing person,” said Jasiyah Cromwell-Henry, another close friend of Gaudet.

The march was organized by Tyler Gallaher-Ryan, who told CTV News he hadn’t known Gaudet personally, but that he had come to know him through the memories of his friends and family.

Gaudet’s mother, Baudouy, has taken to calling him “Ty” for short.

He echoed other community members’ calls for more funding for youth centres and after-school activities — options to help kids find outlets other than violence. He says he hopes that funding will come soon -- ahead of the next tragedy.

“This is a problem that’s now. It needs to be fixed now,” he said. “It could be tomorrow that the next kid is dead. There’s no reason a teen should be carrying a gun or a knife.”

Others who attended the march said they’d like to see more therapy options in schools.

“The kid that did this to Lucas, maybe he had pain in his heart,” said Demers. “Why hold a knife or a weapon? [Students should be able to] talk about it.”


“We’ve all been shocked by what happened in the last months, having young people who died the way they did, it’s not acceptable,” said Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante in a February news conference.

She was joined by Vincent Richer, chief inspector of Montreal police (SPVM), to announce a series of conferences and workshops to revamp the city’s response to youth violence.

Millions of dollars have already been allocated to combatting gang crime and firearm trafficking, through police funding and community groups.

The city says it will also get more than half of a provincial pot totalling $52 million, announced in December, to counter violent crime.

The next conference from the city is slated to take place on March 31 and Baudouy  says she plans to attend.

The Lester B. Pearson School Board (LBPSB) says it is reviewing anti-violence policies and “actively working with police and community groups to address this societal issue,” according to spokesperson Darren Becker.

“We have also established a school safety sub-committee to better understand the needs of students, some of whom are more vulnerable to these behaviours,” he said. Top Stories

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