RCMP in Cumberland County are amazed at the level of support they've received in the form of letters, cards and kindness since last week's fatal shooting of three Codiac RCMP officers in Moncton.
AMHERST – RCMP officers across Cumberland County are being overwhelmed with the level of support they’re receiving from the public in the days following the fatal shooting of three officers in Moncton last week.
“The response we’ve had has been amazing,” Sgt. Allan Carroll of the Cumberland RCMP said Monday. “We’re getting an increasing number of cards and notes of thanks at all our detachments. People are stopping in to say hello and to sign our books of condolences and people are stopping officers to shake their hand and show their support.”
In the hours following the shootings, that killed three officers and wounded two, people began showing up at the Amherst detachment to leave flowers and cards at the base of the flagpoles outside while a silent vigil was held there on Friday night.
Carroll said the books of condolence will remain at the four detachments in the county through Friday, after which they will be collected and sent to the Codiac detachment.
The veteran police officer said he was moved by one item that was dropped off at the Amherst office. The St. Peter family printed the Policeman’s Prayer on a large plaque and brought it to the office.
“It’s very moving,” he said. “To think that someone cares that much about the job we do every day is really moving. It means a lot to our members, as does every card and letter we receive.”
Carroll said RCMP officers across the county are coping in light of the tragedy and the department will make resources available to those who need help.
The Cumberland RCMP sent 19 officers to Moncton last Wednesday night and many of them continued working there until late Thursday.
“We had a few members stay back and look after detachment duties, while Bible Hill sent some members up here to help out as well,” Carroll said.
The shootings, he said, have made officers much more vigilant when responding to calls. He said the officers are also talking to each other about the incident.
He expects at least 20 officers will be making the trip to Moncton on Tuesday for the funeral.
“It’s going to be a difficult day for everyone,” Carroll said.
Books of condolence are also available at both Campbell’s Funeral Home and the Furlong-Jones Funeral Home in Amherst and Sackville, N.B. as well as at the A.H. Brown Funeral Home in Springhill.
On another note, Chignecto-Central Regional School Board communications director Debbie Buott-Matheson said things are business as usual at schools across the district. She said administration kept a close eye on things on Thursday and Friday and the board had counselors available for students and staff if they were having difficulty coping with what happened.
“Everything is fine, there weren’t any major issues,” Buott-Matheson said. “We had counseling services ready to go if the need arose.”
Buott-Matheson said staff were concerned with schools in the Amherst because of its proximity to Moncton since some people who live in Amherst work in Moncton and may have been affected by the lockdown.