Talia Meguinis made a pact with her sisters and her female cousins as their babies started to grow. Disconnected from each other as children, the Meguinis girls vowed as young mothers that they would grow old together and watch their children become parents and raise babies of their own.
That promise has weighed heavily on Deidra Meguinis’s heart since the day, late in February, when Red Deer City RCMP released the name of a Calgary woman whose body had been found in a recycling bin in Red Deer on Feb. 22.
Talia Meguinis, 27, left three sons and a tight network of family and friends, for whom the hurt is as bad now as it was on the day they learned of her fate, said Deidra, who considers Talia her sister because their mothers were sisters.
Deidra said she had felt something was wrong when she learned that a body had been found in Red Deer. Her fears were confirmed later that week, when police confirmed that Talia was the victim.
“When she took her last breath, we all took that last breath with her. When her heart stopped, our hearts stopped,” Deidra said outside a Red Deer courtroom on Wednesday, where a Red Deer man is facing criminal charges in connection with Talia’s death.
“We cry every night and every day for her. It still really hurts. This pain will never end.”
Deidra described Talia as a respected, hard-working and well-educated woman, a strong Christian whose door was always open for anyone who needed a hand. She worked at the Tsuu T’ina health centre and she was a guard at the band’s police station.
She said her own goals have changed because of what happened with Talia. A student at Bow Valley College, Deidra had plans to become a licensed practical nurse.
She decided on the day she learned about Talia’s death that she wants to become a police officer.
Nathan Michael Desharnais, 24, was arrested in September on charges of second-degree murder and interfering with human remains. In custody since his arrest, Desharnais made a brief appearance in Red Deer provincial court. The case was adjourned to Dec. 19 for a bail hearing and to enter a plea.