Innisfail resident Winston “Drew” Grant, 26 (pictured) died last week. Photo contributed

‘My world is gone, it’s always been Drew and I’: Alleged Innisfail manslaughter victim’s mother grieves

“Breathe mom, breathe. We will get through this together.”

That’s what Sheila Grant, the mother of a 26-year-old who died last week, believes her son is telling her when tears are rolling down her face.

“I can just feel Drew’s arms around me telling me we will get through this mom,” Grant said Tuesday, with tears in her eyes.

Malcolm Nathaniel Bourgeois, 40, of Innisfail, was charged with the manslaughter of Winston “Drew” Grant, 26, of Innisfail, Friday. Bourgeois has been remanded into custody and will appear in Red Deer provincial court Wednesday.

Innisfail RCMP were called April 24 at about 10:30 p.m. to the area of 51st Avenue and 49th Street, where there was a report of an injured man on the sidewalk.

The mother remembers the call she received from the police at 11:57 p.m. that night about Drew.

“My world is gone. It’s always been Drew and I,” she said Tuesday, about her son, who would’ve been 27 in August.

Grant saw Drew twice that day, once when he had to pick up something, and the second time when the mother and son went out for milkshakes and fries, which involved talking, smiling, joking around – a common tradition for the family.

Little did the mother know it would be the last time she would see her child.

“I’m a grieving mom, with a very traumatic loss. I guess that’s how you put it,” she said. “There’s a lot of questions, and a lot of wonder whys.

“He was just a good kid, and he was just taken in his prime.”

About seven years ago, Grant lost her mom – someone both her and Drew were close to.

“I know he’s in a good place, with my mom, and they’re up there looking down on us, and looking out for us,” the 49-year-old said as she wept.

Moving on won’t be easy, and would be the hardest thing Grant has ever had to do.

“How does a single parent who was so close to their child move on when they’re gone?”

What she misses is calling Drew up and making plans for visits.

“I want to say, ‘Hey, Drew, you want to go out for coffee? Hey, Drew, you want to go for some ice cream? Hey, Drew, you want to come to my place and spend the night so you can get out of town?’” she said through tears.

Grant, who lives west of Innisfail, said her strong-willed son had a “kind soul,” loved the outdoors and could never say no. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia in his teens, and in the past year, he was trying to find work.

“He always managed to pick himself up and tried to look forward,” Grant said.

Grant remembers Drew to be a “popular kid” while growing up and attending Innisfail Junior Senior High School. She also remembers his love for basketball.

It was hard being a single mom when Drew was growing up because he didn’t have everything the other kids had, Grant recalled.

“But he appreciated everything he got from the family and from what I gave him.”

Since the incident, the mother has received many messages and social media friend requests from people she does not know, but Drew probably knew.

“I just didn’t realize how many people he knew and how many people’s hearts he touched. I’m just overwhelmed with the caring from everybody.”

A Indigenious-style celebration of life is planned for Drew next week at Oklahoma Community Centre in Innisfail area. The family asks any donations be made to Safe Harbour Society in Red Deer.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Central Alberta resident, Sheila Grant, tells herself to “breathe” while tears roll down her eyes. The mother is grieving over her son’s death in Innisfail last week. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff

Just Posted

Red Deer gets $7-million from province for an emergency 12/7 homeless shelter

Councillor says the location will be decided through community consultations

‘Finer focus on job creation:’ Alberta government files red-ink budget

EDMONTON — The Alberta budget is counting on oil and gas bouncing… Continue reading

WATCH: Tabling of the 2020 Alberta budget

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney is scheduled to reveal the provincial budget at… Continue reading

VIDEO: Grumpy sea lion resists help back to water in Washington state

Crews were able to coax her into a crate to carry her back to water

Your community calendar

Feb. 19 A Liberation of Holland event is being held at the… Continue reading

Gardening: Taking a break from the winter

Looking for a break from winter and dream of summer without leaving… Continue reading

Ottawa imposes new rules to protect fragile population of right whales

HALIFAX — Canada has rolled out new measures to protect the critically… Continue reading

Canada pumps nearly 900 billion litres of raw sewage into waterways since 2013

OTTAWA — Canada’s old-fashioned city sewer systems dumped nearly 900 billion litres… Continue reading

Federal government in good financial shape, provinces not so much: PBO

OTTAWA — The federal Liberals could add billions of dollars in spending… Continue reading

Ottawa’s LRT line leaves thousands out in the cold during heavy snowstorm

OTTAWA — Many transit riders in Ottawa were left out in the… Continue reading

All eyes on Wet’suwet’en chiefs’ meeting with federal, provincial ministers

SMITHERS, B.C. — The hereditary chiefs of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation prepared… Continue reading

Scheer appears to backtrack on commitment not to allow debate on abortion

OTTAWA — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer appears to be backtracking on a… Continue reading

Most Read