'We'll stick together, as we always do': N.S. remembers victims with online vigil
Event pays tribute to victims and lent support to all friends, family members and mourners
Canadians paid tribute to the victims of the Nova Scotia shootings and lent support to all friends, family members and mourners across the country during an online vigil.
Last Saturday and Sunday, a gunman's 12-hour rampage through rural Nova Scotia ended the lives of at least 22 victims, making it one of Canada's deadliest mass shootings.
"We're all going through a difficult time and it's okay to feel overwhelmed. If you're struggling, reach out to someone you trust," Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said during Friday two-hour broadcast.
"And if you can let others know that you're here for them. As Canadians, we'll always stand together — today, tomorrow and every day."
The event originated with a livestream on the Colchester-Supporting Our Communities Facebook page.
The virtual vigil included musical tributes and messages of support and hope from dignitaries and notable figures who have a special connection to Nova Scotia.
Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby of Cole Harbour, N.S., paid respects to Const. Heidi Stevenson.
"[She] sacrificed her life protecting others," Crosby said. "I'd like to thank all the first responders and as well, the medical personnel that faced this nightmare head-on to keep us all safe."
"I know we'll stick together, as we always do, through challenging times and help and support those who need it the most. I'm sending all my love and support back home."
Jonathan Torrens, the actor and television personality known for Jonovision, Street Cents and Trailer Park Boys, is a resident of Colchester County, N.S. He said he and others in his area are trying to make sense of what happened.
"Normally in a community like ours — most small towns in fact — we lean on each other in good times and bad. And if something like this were to happen, we would gather to grieve. Find strength and support in each other."
Premier Stephen McNeil said he would wear a Nova Scotia tartan at home in remembrance of the victims, adding he hoped the virtual gathering would capture the spirit of a kitchen party with conversation and music.
"I'm sorry this has to be a virtual gathering. And that the physical connection of a hug is not possible. But you will still feel the love and the warmth in this tribute," McNeil said.
"My hope is that everyone who watches will feel like they are gathering around the table and listening to some remarkable stories about some remarkable people."
The Stanfields, Reeny Smith, Natalie MacMaster, Rose Cousins, Dave Gunning, Charlie A'Court and Classified were just some of the artists who performed at the vigil.
"To my dear Nova Scotia, we are there with you in the deepest of ways. Your charitable spirit, that I witnessed so much in my youth, will not let you down now," MacMaster said.
MacMaster played along to a video of victim Emily Tuck playing the fiddle. Tuck recorded the performance for the Nova Scotia Kitchen Party Facebook page before she died.
If you are seeking mental health support during this time, here are resources available to Nova Scotians.
If you are outside of Nova Scotia, click here to find support in your area.
WATCH | CBC News Special: Nova Scotia Remembers:
With files from The Canadian Press