The more Nathan and I have talked about moving over the past few months, the more I've wanted to stay in our little neighbourhood.
Sure, our neighbours are a little kooky, and I hate the way our entire building smells like pot from March through October. Some of the kids Topher meets in the park use words I don't appreciate and I would never dream of taking a walk by myself after dark - but then again, the same is true of any neighbourhood in the city.
What sets our neighbourhood apart is the people.
Our neighbourhood is a community in every sense of the word. When the kids and I are outside we're typically stopped at least three times by neighbours talking to the kids or asking how my day is or wanting to pat the dog. Ellie gets her cheeks pinched by one particular lady every single time they meet but she still races toward her with a huge grin, yelling "HI!" at the top of her lungs and flapping both arms excitedly to greet her friend.
I took the kids for a walk this morning. It was a morning like any other morning - except that it wasn't.
This morning our street is lined with blue ribbons to honour Const. Daniel Woodall, a member of the Edmonton Police Service , who was killed in the line of duty on Monday night.
He was killed protecting us.
Our neighbourhood has never felt more like a community. I've been amazed at the outpouring of support - for each other, after the frightening ordeal we all went through on Monday night, but more so for the Edmonton Police Service. The investigation was ongoing throughout the day yesterday and every time I was outside I could see people walking through the area, reaching out to shake the hands of officers to offer their condolences, their support, and to say thank you.
In our neighbourhood - in our city - we honour a man, a husband, a father, a son: Const. Daniel Woodall.
Hold your loved ones close. It can all change in the blink of an eye. I am sending thoughts and prayers of strength, comfort and peace for those affected by this tragedy.