Misty Upham’s Sister, Amanda at Memorial Vigil: “Misty would not have committed suicide”

Misty's father, Charlie Upham, kneels to light candle to honor his daugther.

Misty’s father, Charlie Upham, kneels to light candle to honor his daugther.

Prayers, Drumming & Support Evident at Misty Upham Memorial Vigil

AUBURN, WASHINGTON—Some 200 members from several American Indian tribes gathered Sunday afternoon in Auburn, Washington, to pay honor to the late Native actress Misty Upham, 32, who died two weeks ago tonight.

Those gathered were surrounded by balloons, candles and several photographs of the late “August: Osage County” actress.

Two weeks ago tonight Upham left her sister’s home and disappeared into the night. She was missing until her body was discovered 11 days later, this past Thursday afternoon by a search team on the banks of the White River in Auburn.

Vigil in Auburn, Washington for Misty Upham

The memorial vigil for Upham was held at Fir Street and Auburn Way in Auburn, a suburb of Seattle, the same location dubbed the Search Team Base Camp during the search efforts to find Misty. The search teams consisted mainly of American Indians from the Seattle American Indian community.

The King County Medical Examiner’s Office released a statement on Friday indicating Upham passed away on the same evening she left the apartment.

Misty Upham vigil balloon

Though there is much speculation on the cause of Upham’s untimely death, the cause of her death was not listed pending an investigation, according the statement.

IMG_2749Among those at the memorial vigil Sunday were Misty’s father, Charlie Upham and her sister, Amanda.

“Misty would not have committed suicide. She loved life. She did not believe in that,” stated Upham’s sister, Amanda.  “She was looking forward to life and was full of life. She had so much life to live. She is in a better place now but we all miss her. She loved and gave to so many people but sometimes she would say she did not think people thought of her in the same way. She would be so happy to see so many people here out of love. She would have been so happy to know she was loved.”

Funeral arrangements for Ms. Upham were announced on Sunday. Her body will be taken to the Pentecostal Church at Muckleshoot, located at 39731 Auburn Enumclaw Road, SE in Auburn at noon on Wednesday. There will be wakes on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evenings.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, October 25, at 2:00 p.m. at the church. 

Editor’s Note: Robin LaDue contributed to this article from Auburn, Washington.

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