Dear Fort McMurray,
There can be no denying that Alberta and Québec have had our differences over the years. Be it sports rivalries – NHL and CFL – or disagreements on pipelines and threats of freezing in the dark. But these seem trivial in light of your current plight.
All eyes in Canada and far beyond are focused on the incredible devastating fires that have engulfed your city. Yet I believe no HD television can accurately portray an iota of the fear, panic and sadness you must have experienced. Keep in mind that thoughts in multiple languages and prayers reflecting numerous religious traditions are with you during this terrible time. Your heartbreaking evacuation and the subsequent loss of your city have been anxiously followed and deeply felt across the country.
Although I have not had the pleasure of visiting your city, one need only watch the numerous interviews with evacuees to understand the strong sense of ‘home’ that Fort McMurray instills in its residents. Time and time again those who have been forced to leave state unequivocally that once conditions allow they are going home to start again.
And that day will come. Not soon enough for those who have been directly touched by the fires, but eventually. I have no doubt that in the not too distant future the same news channels that are broadcasting horrific images of the fires will be covering the newly rebuilt Fort McMurray.
Until then Godspeed, and rest assured you are not alone because today we are all Fort McMurray!