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Photographers Took Part In This Touching Tribute For A Saskatchewan Family

In memory of Jordan, Chandra, Miguire, and Kamryn Van de Vorst.

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People as far away as the U.K. are lighting up glowsticks in honour of a Saskatchewan family killed in a car crash, all thanks to the kindness of total strangers.

Jordan and Chanda Van de Vorst and their two children, Miguire and Kamryn, were killed in a car crash near Saskatoon earlier this month.

Vigil for the Van De Vorst family provincial wide/Facebook / Via Facebook: 948949405140586

Jordan was an amateur photographer and member of the Facebook group Saskatchewan Freedom Photography.

His work included stunning panoramas of the Saskatchewan landscape, including long-exposure images capturing the light of the stars and aurora borealis.

He also experimented with glowsticks, which is what inspired this touching tribute.

Colin Chatfield used to go out shooting photos with Jordan. He came up with the idea for the glowstick tribute. "When we were out doing night photography with Jordan we did a technique called 'light painting' with glowsticks," he told BuzzFeed Canada.

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Helen Urlacher and Tanis Hawryluk — two other members of the photography Facebook group — helped set up the Facebook page. They asked the group to light a glowstick on Jan. 9 in remembrance, and the response was overwhelming.

Dozens of images show glowsticks hanging from trees, in windows, and held in the hands of people far and wide.

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"It’s gone national, it’s crazy," Hawryluk told BuzzFeed Canada. Photos have come in from not just Canada, but Texas, the U.K., and Hawaii.


"I really honestly didn’t think we’d get 100 likes. We felt compelled to do something and we never expected the outpouring of emotion and support," said Urlacher. "And I feel so good that we could have done something for the family."

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Hawryluk and Urlacher didn't even know each other prior to the project, but they called each other in tears when they saw how many people were sending in photos.

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Family members of the Van de Vorsts have also left comments expressing how touched they are by the images.

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"They were overwhelmed by the outpouring of support that they’ve had," said Hawryluk.

"They’re happy to see the impact Jordan and his family have had on the community."

Chatfield says they will print off some of the photos and give them to the family.

Though it was meant to be a one-night memorial, the images will now be compiled into a book by a photographer friend of Jordan's, according to CBC News.

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"It makes me feel very humble to have been able to help in some way," said Urlacher.

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"It’s an honour. I never expected this much show of support that we’ve had and not only in Saskatchewan or Canada — it’s the whole world."

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Lauren Strapagiel is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto, Canada.

Contact Lauren Strapagiel at

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