James Brady, a Metis leader and prospector from Lake Vincent Alberta, vanished in the Lower Foster Lake area nearly 190 kilometres north of La Ronge Saskatchewan on June 7, 1967.
Brady was on a prospecting venture in northern Saskatchewan with Cree Band Councillor and fellow activist, Absolom Halkett – both men faded from their lakeside camp without a trace.
Authors Michael Nest, Deanna Reder and Eric Bell collaborated on a book about Brady’s and Halkett’s disappearances in a real crime novel titled Cold Case North.
Cold Case North represents the narrative of a team uniting to expose police failures in the original investigation of Brady’s disappearance.
With help from members of the Indigenous community, the team discovered recent clues and testimony.
Political intrigue might’ve played a role in Brady’s sudden departure from the world.
Rumours circulated about secret mining interests in the area where the men were prospecting. Tales of political secrecy and murder have added to this mystery, notably because of Brady’s political background.
Brady had been involved with the radical movements since the 1930s. He often tried to sway the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (changed to the NDP in 1961 after merging with the Canadian Labour Congress) to advance Indigenous policies, but hardly any figure in Canadian progressive politics paid attention.
Although ignored by mainstream left-wing politics, Brady had been an essential part of Western Canada’s Metis community, helping to inaugurate the Association des Métis d’Alberta et des Territoires du Nord-Ouest in 1932.
He frequently spoke against government and church-led repression against the First Nations and the Metis, consequently gaining lots of enemies in Canada’s establishment.
The 272-page crime story set in northern Saskatchewan and published by the University of Regina will be released in November 2020.