SEIU Remembers: National Day of Mourning

Every year, on April 28, SEIU Healthcare marks the National Day of Mourning. We stand with thousands of labour activists across the country as we pause to pay respects to our Sisters and Brothers who were killed or injured at work. Though much progress has been made in workplace safety, workers continue to die on the job. Last year alone, 298 Canadians died at work. On April 28, join us as we remember. This is Nicole Rogers’ story.

Remembering Nicole

Nicole Rogers left a part of herself with everyone she met. The bubbly 25-year-old loved helping people. Growing up, the athletic teenager always had a knack for helping the less fortunate, a trait that would become clearly evident in her future profession as a homecare worker.

Nicole, who resided in McGregor, Ontario graduated with her Personal Support Worker (PSW) certificate from St. Clair College. She took a part-time job with Red Cross Care Partners and never looked back.

“Everything came together for her when she began working as a PSW,” said Sherry Rogers, Nicole’s mother. “She found something she really loved doing. Nicole loved her clients and thrived on helping them cope with their illnesses. She kept saying that this is exactly what she was meant to do.”

Sadly, on January 29 at about 5:00 p.m., Nicole’s life was tragically cut short.

“She was on-the-job driving from one client’s house to another when she got into a two-car accident,” said her mother. “She usually checked in with me after every client. I started to get a funny feeling when I didn’t hear from her a few hours after her last client.”

By 9:00 p.m., a police officer was at Sherry’s door with a parent’s worst nightmare: her daughter died in the accident. The driver of the other car had minor injuries.

The days after were a blur.

“We were devastated,” said Sherry. “In the midst of our sorrow, we had to plan for our daughter’s funeral. Where do you begin?”

The family pulled together in their time of need. Nicole’s many friends and relatives came out to pay their last respects. What Sherry didn’t expect, though, was to see so many of Nicole’s clients and co-workers attending the funeral.

“It was amazing to see how many people Nicole had touched in the short time she was a PSW. It was a testament to just how kind and big-hearted she was. People loved her. She really left a part of herself with everyone she met.”

Nicole’s caring and compassion will always be remembered, by everyone she touched.

Our sincerest condolences go to Nicole’s family, friends, clients and coworkers. Nicole is survived by her mother Sherry, father Tony, and her brother Christopher. To make a donation in honour of Nicole, please contact the Windsor branch of the Canadian Red Cross Society.