EDITORIAL: Responding to a tragedy

The shootings in Penticton and Salmon Arm have affected lives up and down the Okanagan

After the shootings in Penticton on Monday, and Salmon Arm Sunday, many who live in the region are mourning.

Police are continuing to investigate the Penticton killings, in two neighbourhoods, and will look for motivations in an effort to understand why the events occurred.

A 60-year-old Penticton man has been charged with the south Okanagan shootings, although the names of the four victims have not been released. And a 25-year-old has been charged in Salmon Arm, where two men were shot at a local church: Gordon Parmenter did not survive.

Penticton police have said this was a targeted incident and all victims were connected to the suspect.

The killings are the deadliest in Penticton’s history and the sixth-worst in the province’s past.

During the day on Monday, downtown Penticton was under a lockdown and residents were asked to stay inside.

When the lockdown was lifted, the community had changed. Likewise, Salmon Arm has changed since the tragic shooting Sunday.

The entire Okanagan remains in a state of shock after these incidents.

Some knew one or more of the victims. Some know or are acquainted with the shooters. And many have been in the neighbourhoods where the shootings occurred.

We are all affected by this. They occurred near where we live. Our home and our community has been altered.

Coming to terms with a tragedy of this nature is not easy and many of us are still processing our thoughts and emotions.

Some will choose to sit down with family or friends and discuss what happened and how it has affected them personally.

Others may speak with counsellors as they seek guidance during the grieving process.

This is a time to acknowledge what we are feeling as we each come to terms with a terrible tragedy that has happened right here, in our community.

— Black Press

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