Please leave our healing community alone

Dear Editor,

Re: Letter from Corinne Blanchette, Observer March 10

Quietly people have grieved in our community, for the child, youth, teenager, and elderly person whom passing here hurt. As people we extend our arms in compassion to uphold hurting families, and embrace them as they walk the process of agonizing and seemingly unbearable pain.  We have welcomed them into our homes, our business’, our community events, our churches. Some have extended social knowledge and gently made referrals to funded programs that through wonderful places like community services there are professional people that quietly listen,  while privately the healing tears drop. Some in support and love place a flower or teddy bear publicly, and our municipal workers, emotionally affected simply “allow”. Support, compassion, empathy, and love is what the Agassiz-Harrison community has been about for a great many decades, and we can thank our community ancestors, elders and seniors for setting this loving historical foundation stone.

Many years ago, I was a peacekeeper, now older veteran. A passing, regardless of circumstance does cause pain and sadness. The emotional implications reverberate from the person standing in close proximity, to those standing far off, to the leadership many kilometres away. Our humanness does not allow us to feel, and not to grieve. I was only a private all those years ago, but it was never lost on me after someone died that I was not the person who had to pick up the phone and make the call to the fearful wife, child, mother, father, grandparent, that their beloved one had passed. That was a manger’s responsibility: there is honour and strength in carrying such an experience into the future.

There are many people who put themselves forward in public service to save lives, a consideration in the career choice for those on emergency services. Their experience is layered with emotional response, and compressed into active and horrific circumstances, almost daily. They immediately find themselves in the middle of life and death decisions, panic stricken and emotionally distraught people, all the while knowing whether their life saving attempts are successful or not, they have to ensure the core safety and security of the scene, so that investigators can find “truth”. Time is of the essence in crisis, however the resolution also takes time… slow, methodical, calculated, patient, articulate documented and evidence-based time. Any other approach would be unlawful and disrespectful to those who passed during the incident, and the family members do require fair judicial closure, again, the truth.

Within our community there is not a dividing line between business owners and those that make the choice to work for them. Capital investment in a small community such as ours is based on teamwork and creating positive lives for families.

Using the passing of a member of our community, with the targeted intention to draw a hateful and disrespectful proverbial line in the sand, with normal grieving people on one side, and then willfully pushing community stakeholders like the newspaper, business owners, managers, community services, the police, ambulance, and workplace investigators on the other side, is by any stretch reprehensible, in its hatred and targeted anger, which could only infuse conflict and unfairness for everyone involved.

Ms. Blanchette, flash-point tactics to bring local awareness for some unionism April 28th date, remains inappropriate and disrespectful. Please leave our healing community alone.

Shane Wallace Firlotte, BSW.

Agassiz

Just Posted

Lagoon improvements, but no safety audit recommendations, coming to Harrison

The lagoon will see electrical upgrades, a new flag pole and fencing, but no life jackets or signs

UFV introduces first mindfulness graduate program in Canada

Most of the University of the Fraser Valley program is offered online

All child porn charges against Chilliwack realtor dismissed

Meissner’s computers contained ‘miniscule’ amount of content normally found on offenders’ devices

Mounties hunt for missing Langley man

The public has been asked to help locate David Grainger, last seen on March 19

B.C. Wildfire crews respond to Sts’ailes, Morris Valley fires

A fire at the First Nation and a grass fire in Mission sent smoke across the valley Wednesday

Harrison Hot Springs students bring ‘Twelfth Night’ to life

The adaption of Shakespeare’s classic comedy include songs and phrases from Canada’s east coast

Vancouver Giant named to Western Conference first-tier all-star team

Young hockey defenceman Bowen Byram is once again lauded for his outstanding efforts on the ice

Permit rejected to bring two cheetahs to B.C.

Earl Pfeifer owns two cheetahs, one of which escaped in December 2015

Real-life tsunami threat in Port Alberni prompts evacuation updates

UBC study says some people didn’t recognize the emergency signal

Care providers call for B.C. seniors’ watchdog to step down

The association also asks the province to conduct an audit and review of the mandate of her office

Nitro Cold Brew Coffee from B.C. roaster recalled due to botulism scare

“If you purchased N7 Nitro Cold Brew Coffee from Cherry Hill … do not drink it.”

B.C. man gets award for thwarting theft, sexual assault – all in 10 minutes

Karl Dey helped the VPD take down a violent sex offender

Punching Parkinson’s in the Fraser Valley

Rock Steady Boxing program, designed to help battle symptoms of Parkinson’s, coming to Abbotsford in April

Baby left alone in vehicle in B.C. Walmart parking lot

Williams Lake RCMP issue warning after attending complaint at Walmart Wednesday

Most Read