A 12-year-old Fort McMurray girl is being remembered one year after her tragic death.
Mandla Youaleu-Mbomback passed away on August 10, 2019, after being involved in a car accident while traveling with her family in Montana.
“We went from having a family, me having my kid, living in a community that I love, doing a job that I really love to… we have a lot of struggles,” said Mireille Tsafack-Zatcha, Mandla’s mother.
The last 12 months for the family have been ‘worse than a nightmare.’
They lost a daughter who loved to volunteer in the community and promote her culture. Back in 2017, she won an annual Black History school essay competition and just two years later was among the children’s choir who led the Black History Banquet in singing ‘O Canada.’
“She was the most giving person I’ve ever known even though she was only twelve,” added Mireille. “She was just giving, caring, and loving.”
Her family has since started the Mandla Foundation which has a goal of helping children. They recently provided toys and colouring books for kids who were displaced by April’s flood.
To them, this was the perfect way to honour her legacy.
Meanwhile, several residents in the community went down to Snye Point Park on Monday where a celebration of life was held. This was one of multiple events held in Alberta and Cameroon, where her family is from, which were held to honour Mandla.
Songs were played, accompanied by prayers, with balloons featuring her two favourite colours pink and yellow also being released.
“It doesn’t take long for people to truly understand how special she is, you just have to spend a minute or two hearing about the amazing things she accomplished in her short time with us,” said Beverley Makia, who put on the event.
The Saline Creek Bridge and Shell Place Canopy are also being lit up in pink and yellow.
LISTEN: On this edition of Fort McMurray Matters, we’re joined by the mother of 12-year-old Mandla Youaleu-Mbomback, who passed away on this day last year, as she talks about her daughter and celebrations of life happening across the province #ymm #rmwb https://t.co/P7EkRFx4Lw pic.twitter.com/EdFLoGhwKY
— MIX 103.7 News (@Mix1037FMNews) August 10, 2020