Friday, September 21, 2012

Josee-Anne Desrochers, local hero

Josee-Anne Desrochers died seven years ago and surprisingly few tributes rolled in to praise the woman who led a feisty campaign take the biker war seriously after her 11-year-old son Daniel Desrochers was killed by shrapnel in a car bomb attack at Adam and Pie IX on August 9, 1995.
  Desrochers was at her job at a rag-recycling plant while her son was trekking to the swimming pool with his older brother on that day.
  Debris from a car bomb hit his head and he was in a coma for a few days before dying.
 Desrochers' loss proved a win for all of us as the sad tale inspired pressure to finally enact legislation that made it illegal to be a member of a criminal gang.
    However she was nobody's puppet, as she attacked authorities at every level. She said the RCMP was partly to blame for failing to use informant info to prevent the blast. She said the province was to blame for giving her paltry compensation and no counselling during her difficult time and she even blamed the police for sexually abusing her at a function.
  She wrote a book about her story, which included plenty of sexual abuse as a child.
Daniel Desrochers as he was and as he might have become
  And she famously snubbed the bikers, who reportedly offered her $3 million through their lawyer Daudelin to stop her anti-biker campaign. It's not really clear if they would have written her a cheque or given her a bag of cash or what.
  She eventually married and moved to Chertsey Quebec and died of pneumonia at age 40 in 2005.
  Desrochers was close to Robert Monastesse, although I am not sure that it was he who she married.
  Monastesse had been a freelance journalist who wrote a killer expose of the Rock Machine before getting shot himself. Few in the journalistic community expressed any interest in his plight at the time. I've wanted to speak to him for about 15 years.
   Desrochers died of complications from pneumonia. She had apparently lost something like 30 pounds, so it's unclear whether there were other health problems that she suffered.
  Daniel Desrochers was a little bit like a Jesus figure for this city, sacrificing his life for our peace. He would have been 28 years old now.
  There is supposedly a tiny little plaque in a playground near where he died, described a few years ago as falling apart. I think Josee-Annee Desrochers should be commemorated with a posthumous Order of Canada or Ordre du Quebec.


Kate M. said...

This is a long shot, but is she Thérèse Daviau, whose daughter was killed in the Polytechnique massacre?

Kristian said...

Nice try Kate, similar theme but different story.

Kate M. said...

Yeah, I figured it was a marginal guess. That isn't the face of a city councillor. (Just saw the answer posted to Facebook.)

Ryk Edelstein said...

Pasted it into Google image search and no results... She does not exist.

Jed said...

Josee-Anne Desrochers, whose son Daniel was killed by a Hells Angels car bomb in Hochelaga- Maisonneuve. I was there that day. Impossible to forget.

Anonymous said...

This is Josee-Anne Desrochers, her son Daniel became a victim in a motorcycle gang war,she was instrumental in the creation of the anti-gang law, she is now deceased but we do owe her our gratitude, she should be recognized for having had this law adopted

Chuck said...

Thanks for reminding us of this sad story. The biker war went to extreme with shooting of journalist, killing of prison guards and that young boy. So many innocents were victims of targeted killings by hitmen like Trudeau or Gallant who later admitted killing scores of people. Good thing, the bikers were wiped out after that unlike in the rest of Canada. Any news from the "mighty" mom Boucher?

blamma said...

That little boy was so cute! Horrifying to imagine....
Boucher is still in prison serving multiple life sentences, many others incarcerated or dead.

Nick said...

May the earth rest lightly on both of them.