Joanne Young, the mother of missing Nanaimo woman, passes away


Family mourns the loss of Joanne Young and says they’ll keep missing Lisa’s Young’s case in the public eye. Kendall Hanson reports. 

Joanne Young never sought out the media spotlight but that’s where she found herself time and again, as she tried to make sure the search for her missing daughter Lisa Young never faded from the public eye.

Last year, she was feeling positive because the federal government had just announced a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women. 

“It’s about time and I’m really hopeful that Trudeau will follow through,” Young said in December 2015.

That was Joanne Young’s last interview with CHEK News. Her annual vigil in Lisa’s memory also stopped. She did not say it publicly, but it was because her health was failing.

“I wouldn’t let her do it in the last couple of years cause her health was deteriorating,” says her husband Don Young. “It takes a lot of stress, emotional stress, to doing that and I though that’s a bit much.”

It was June 2002 that 21-year-old Lisa Young went missing. She was last seen leaving a house party with a guy she had just met, who was driving a Jaguar. 

Though foul play is suspected, her body has never been found and RCMP have never laid charges.

The situation weighed heavily on Joanne and it only added to her health problems. She was on dialysis and she needed a kidney transplant that never came. She passed away in hospital last week.

“So kind and loving and caring,” her father Moses Martin said. 

“I’m going to miss her but she’ll always be in my heart,” Young’s mother Cynthia Arnet said.

“She’s a major sweetie, [had a] great sense of humour and my best friend and just a lot of fun to be with,” Don Young said. 

Joanne Young never got the answers she was hoping for in her daughter’s case but her family believes she now has those answers and her suffering is over.

“We would’ve loved to at least know what happened but we still don’t know at this point and I’m happy for my daughter that’s she now with her daughter,” Martin said. 

Her family said they will now take on the task of keeping Lisa’s memory alive – they’re planning a vigil in Lisa’s and Joanne’s memory for July 16. 

Kendall HansonKendall Hanson

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