A 23-year-old RCMP veteran, a “passionate” local teacher, a nurse and a caregiver are among the victims of Sunday’s violent rampage in Nova Scotia.
Lisa McCully, a teacher at Debert Elementary School, is seen by students and colleagues as “a brilliant love” for her family and friends.
McCully’s death was confirmed Sunday by the Nova Scotia Teachers Union.
“The NSTU mourns the loss of one of us, Lisa McCully, who was the victim of the senseless violence that began in Portapique, Nova Scotia, last night,” the statement said.
“The heart of the NSTU is broken with that of her colleagues and students at Debert elementary school, as well as her family and friends who knew her not only as a passionate teacher, but as a brilliant love in their life.”
McCully’s sister also posted a Facebook statement on Sunday expressing the family’s grief.
“Our hearts are broken today as we try to accept the loss of my sister, Lisa McCully, who was one of the victims of the mass shootings in Portapique last night,” the press release reads. by Jenny Kierstead.
“Our condolences go out to the other family members who are affected by this tragedy. Thanks for your support, it’s been a hard day. “
In a statement released Monday, the College of Nurses of the Victorian Order of Nurses (VON) confirmed the identities of two other victims, Heather O’Brien and Kristen Beaton, who both worked for the health care organization .
O’Brien, a wife, mother and grandmother, worked as a licensed practical nurse at VON for nearly 17 years, the organization said.
Beaton, a continuing care assistant at VON, was a young wife and mother. Both have been described as “caring and compassionate members of the VON team”.
“We have been in contact with their families and offer our sincere condolences and support during this difficult time,” read a statement by VON President Jo-Anne Poirier.
“All of our primary care providers are heroes. Two of these heroes, Heather O’Brien and Kristen Beaton, were kidnapped from their families and VON yesterday. We mourn their loss and we mourn for their families. “
Const. Heidi Stevenson of the RCMP also died on Sunday morning in response to the active shooter incident.
Stevenson, a 23-year-old police veteran, has left two children and a husband at home, according to a statement from Nova Scotia RCMP Commander Lee Bergerman.
“Heidi answered the call of duty and lost her life while protecting those she served,” Bergerman said in the statement.
Those who knew the agent said that she was a loving wife who “lived for her family” and worked tirelessly for her community.
“She had a smile that would light up a room. I thought last night if I never saw her not smile, and I don’t think I ever did, “said the RCMP sergeant. Joe Taplin told CTV Your Morning Monday.
“Heidi was all about her family. That’s all she ever talked about when she came to work … I can’t even begin to say it, what [her family] Traverse. It just hurts too much. “
Stevenson was well known in the small N.S. of the RCMP division, according to Taplin who noted “we all crossed paths in some way. “
“She probably saved many more lives than we will ever know by doing what she had to do to prevent this person from doing more harm,” he said. “She is probably one of the most wonderful and caring people you have ever met. “
RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki described Stevenson as someone with “a great love of life” who was dedicated to his role as an agent. She was also a media spokesperson for the Nova Scotia RCMP, where she participated in radio and television interviews for several reports on police activities in the area.
“Anyone who knows her has said that she just has a great love of life and that she is a hard worker and very dedicated to her chosen career,” said Lucki.
The RCMP is continuing to investigate the incident, which involves several crime scenes spread across the province. Premier Stephen McNeil said in a statement on Sunday that the massacre was “one of the most senseless acts of violence in the history of our province.”