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MISSING: Josh the sloth

by | Feb 26, 2024 | Campus, News | 1 comment

If you’re a MacEwan student, chances are that you’ve come across an endless number of posters that are all across campus. Some are invitations to events, and others are meant to be informative. What we don’t usually see is lost and found posters, specifically in search of the plushie, Josh the sloth. 

At first, I thought this might be a joke or a performance art piece. It wasn’t until I spoke with Sierra Etzerza when I realized the call for help was genuine. 

Etzerza, a student in the bachelor of science program, came to our meeting dressed head-to-toe in pink. “I used to wear black all the time, but [as] I was getting out of high school into university I started wearing pink,” says Etzerza. Etzerza also brought along a sloth plushie named Simon, the younger sibling of her lost plushie Josh.

“The day I lost Josh, I was walking down the pedway from the SAMU building to Building 9 to get a Gatorade in the vending machine. I went to my class in Building 11, went up the elevator to my class on the fifth floor,” she says. “Once I got there, he was no longer there in my backpack. I immediately backtracked. I assume I lost him in the elevator, and someone picked him up.”

I asked Etzerza about the significance of the plushies “I never really had friends who were always there for me. For me, it was stuffed animals,” Etzerza says. “What I struggled with, with normal friends, is that they weren’t always there for me. I didn’t feel like I could open up, but when I came home I would just cry. The only people who wouldn’t judge me for that were my stuffed animals.” 

When I was much younger, I spent most of my time with my little brother. We had about 60 stuffed animals that we’d play with. For me, these moments of play were significant to my growth as a person. I spoke to the animals as if they were alive; they were my creative outlet. It’s no surprise that Etzerza feels the same way today, especially in a stressful environment such as university. 

Etzerza shared that a security studies practicum student contacted them over Snapchat. Others have also reached out, “most people have expressed their support and that means a lot to me,” she says.

I didn’t know what I was getting myself into when I agreed to interview Etzerza, but I came out of the interview hoping and praying for the return of Josh the sloth plushie. I like to think of students at MacEwan as a giant family, and as a family we need to help our own. 

If you have information regarding Josh the Sloth, please reach out to Etzerza’s Instagram ( @sierra.rain_ ).

Raynesh Ram

The Griff

1 Comment

  1. Z

    I hear ya about not having friends who are always there for you Etzerza. I hope you find your plushie.


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