Posted On: Saturday, May 6, 2017
Fort McMurray, Alberta
May 3, 2017
Dear Camp Cairn Family,
Today is the first anniversary of the Fort McMurray wildfire and evacuation on May 3 rd , 2016.
A number of months ago Mapes forwarded the letters you had written last summer to the people of Fort McMurray, to us, the Robertson/Woodley family of Grace “Oria” and Hannah “Teo”, to share with people here. I have brought them into my office today at the Municipality (City of Fort McMurray) to share your heartfelt messages with the staff. Everyone who works here has been effected in some way by the wildfire; most went through the evacuation, some stayed to help with efforts to stop the fire, many lost their homes, and all are helping with recovery. It has been very difficult year. Due to fire and smoke damage many kids could not go to their regular schools, our hospital has been wrapped in plastic (until they can get new siding and windows replaced this spring), and neighborhoods are being rebuilt from the ash.
Today, as people are reflective of the events of last year, it is not only with the emotion of fear, loss and change but one of hope, strength and the immense gratitude of the people of Canada who showed us so much love and support, at the time and during this year, as we emerged from this tragic event! That includes gratitude to all of you at Camp Cairn who sent powerful messages of prayer, concern and strength last summer, which are just as valued and as impactful today as people struggle through recovery. People here continue to find solstice through your messages.
You should never forget the power of letting people know that they are not alone!
In humble appreciation of you sharing your compassion and strength,
Leslie, Brian, Grace (Oria) and Hannah (Teo)
Fort McMurray Strong/Alberta Strong