Laura Fraser

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Laura Fraser is an award-winning journalist who writes about justice, health and the human experience. Story ideas are welcome at

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Dissociative episodes made N.S. veteran relive time in Afghanistan, fatality inquiry hears

The military psychiatrist to first treat Lionel Desmond after he was released from the military, described his post-traumatic stress disorder as severe when they met in 2015 — and it included dissociative events that would send the veteran back to Afghanistan for minutes at a time. 

Adapting to civilian life was a struggle for N.S. veteran who killed family, himself: psychologist

Lionel Desmond struggled to transition to civilian life, at times reporting that he drank upward of 70 beers a week and ate fewer than 600 calories a day, the first psychologist who saw him after leaving the military testified Thursday.

Psychologist for veteran who killed family tells N.S. inquiry she 'would never have predicted it'

The psychologist who treated Lionel Desmond for complex post-traumatic stress disorder at Canadian Forces Base Gagetown says she never saw any sign that the Afghanistan veteran would harm himself or his family. 

Veteran with PTSD who killed family repeatedly relapsed if stressed, inquiry hears

The military psychiatrist who diagnosed Lionel Desmond with complex post-traumatic stress disorder told a fatality inquiry that despite some improvement after three years of treatment, the Afghanistan veteran continued to relapse when triggered by life stressors.

Lionel Desmond killed their daughter and granddaughter, but in-laws say they won't 'demonize' him

Sheldon Borden still speaks highly of Lionel Desmond — calling him "a big brother" — despite the tragedy that happened in the Borden family home after the Afghanistan veteran walked in on Jan. 3, 2017, carrying a gun. That evening, Desmond shot his family and himself.

Veteran who killed family and himself wasn't prepared for realities of war, fellow soldier tells N.S. inquiry

The Afghanistan veteran who killed his family and himself a decade after he served overseas was not prepared for the realities of war and is among eight soldiers in his battalion to have died by suicide since their 2007 tour, Lionel Desmond's friend and fellow retired soldier testified Thursday at a Nova Scotia fatality inquiry.

Lionel Desmond's sister tells N.S. inquiry of finding crime scene after veteran killed family and himself

Cpl. Lionel Desmond's family members continued to testify at a Nova Scotia fatality inquiry into the circumstances leading up to the veteran's fatal shooting of his wife, daughter, mother and himself four years ago.

Sister of veteran who killed family testifies about lack of support at N.S. inquiry

Members of two families at the heart of the Lionel Desmond fatality inquiry have begun to share what they remember of the time leading up to the tragedy that shattered a small community in Guysborough County, N.S., on Jan. 3, 2017, when Desmond, an Afghanistan veteran with a history of mental illness, fatally shot his wife, mother, daughter and himself.

Why these historical re-enactment enthusiasts were mistakenly kicked off Facebook

A group of Halifax historical re-enactment enthusiasts have found themselves facing a very modern-day problem: their social media accounts disappeared overnight. They were mistakenly caught up in the crackdown on QAnon and found no avenue to appeal.

Should virtual doctor visits continue in Nova Scotia? Physicians say it's critical

The pandemic has restructured everything from going to school to work — and, in Nova Scotia, it ushered in virtual medicine. But the temporary plan the McNeil government adopted to allow doctors to charge for telephone or online visits expires at the end of the month.