Reflecting on the devastating news in recent days

The world unites following tragic events

For the last number of days, it has been hard to escape the devastating news not only in Las Vegas, but in our home province as well.

The events that have unfolded are almost unimaginable.

Here in our province, an attack in Edmonton over the weekend left Albertans reeling. To have such an act happen so close to home is difficult to comprehend.

Abdulahi Hasan Sharif, 30, has been charged with five counts of attempted murder after he allegedly plowed into a police barricade at a football game, striking an Edmonton police officer. On video the suspect can be seen getting out of the vehicle, running over to the officer who lay injured on the ground, and stabbing him multiple times.

Hours after the initial incident, a U-Haul, allegedly driven by the suspect, then struck pedestrians along Jasper Avenue, an area populated with people enjoying themselves on a Saturday night. The van ultimately flipped before police arrested the suspect. He is now in police custody. Early reports also noted that in one of the vehicles driven by the suspect, an Islamic flag was found on the front passenger seat. No terrorism charges have been laid at this point, but police say their investigation is in preliminary stages.

Our hearts go out to our fellow Albertans who were injured or affected by this attack. To have such an incident happen in Alberta is hard to comprehend – yes we are not immune, but such an act is extremely rare here.

To the south, it is hard to escape the images and stories coming out of Las Vegas. Upwards of 22,000 people were in attendance at the Route 91 Harvest Festival – a three-day music event – before shots rang out on Sunday evening. Fifty-nine people were killed and more than 500 people injured after Stephen Craig Paddock, 64, from Mesquite, Nevada, opened fire from his hotel room at Mandalay Bay. Paddock was found dead in the room upon police arrival.

The deadliest mass shooting in the U.S. has certainly left an impact on the entire world.

Details continue to emerge from both incidents, and we are hearing more about the heroic people who helped to save lives and how communities have come together. We need to continue to support, educate and empower each other as our world changes.

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