‘We want justice’: Families of murdered Yakama people call out for answers

Family members of missing and murdered indigenous people say they are frustrated, angry, heartbroken and are feeling a host of other emotions, not just at the loss of their loved ones but at the lack of answers.

Those families marched down Main Street in Wapato on Saturday afternoon to call attention to their sisters, brothers, children and parents who are no longer here, shouting: “No more stolen sisters: bring our sisters home…No more stolen brothers: bring our brothers home.”

The gathering was centered on 31-year-old mother-of-four Rosenda Strong, who disappeared Oct 2, 2018.

After a nearly 300-day search for Rosenda, family members were notified July 4 that she’d been killed and that her body had been found in a in a freezer in a remote area off of Highway 97 near Toppenish.

But as the crowd gathered in a former park behind Wapato City Hall, family members spoke out about the May killing of Oscar Rangel — Rosenda’s nephew.

Oscar was fatally shot in May, and his body was found near Highway 97 and West Wapato Road; family members say they’ve heard almost nothing from investigators.

No arrests have been made in either case. Activists and family members alike say they’ll continue to hold events and press for answers until justice is served.

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