Father of Calgary mass-murder suspect speaks
CALGARY - The text of the statement given by the father of 22-year-old Calgary mass-murder suspect Matthew de Grood:
"I am Douglas de Grood and I am an inspector with the Calgary Police Service, but I am here today not as a police officer, but as a parent and a husband. I speak for my wife, Susan de Grood, as we are one voice.
"We are shocked and devastated and we are trying to make sense of what happened.
"We are deeply saddened for what the families and friends of the victims are going through. Your lives have been turned upside down. We know words cannot begin to ease your pain and suffering. Please accept our deepest condolences and know you are in our hearts, our thoughts and our prayers.
"Our condolences also go out to the first responders who attended the scene. You had to detach from your emotions to do your job. Your professionalism was exceptional.
"Like any parent can tell you, a love for your child is unconditional and we love Matthew dearly.
"Our Matthew is a great kid, full of love, kindness and respect for others. Growing up, he received good grades in school and was active in a variety of sports. As a young adult, he got a part-time job, entered university and became more involved in the community. He raised funds for charities through his passion for running. He had a bright future ahead of him as he was about to start law school in the fall.
"Just like you, we struggle to understand what happened. We have received an outpouring of support from our extended families, our friends and neighbours, co-workers and even people we have never met. We thank each one of you for your support. We will never recover from this, but the collective support has helped ease some of the pain.
"We hope someday we will have answers as to why this happened. Regardless, it won't bring the victims back, but we would give anything to do just that.
"Our final words are to you, the media. We ask that you respect our family's privacy as we deal with this tragedy.
"Thank you for your co-operation."