TABER – Losing a child to a senseless act of violence, is something Rev. Dale Lang is all too familiar with.
It was Apr. 28, 1999 when a 14-year-old shooter opened fire at W.R. Myers High School in the southern Alberta town of Taber, just east of Lethbridge.
The incident left one boy injured and killed Lang’s 17-year-old son, Jason.
“There really has never been words that could express to someone the blackness, the emptiness, the absolute pain of that moment,” said Rev. Lang.
Now, 17-years later, families just one province away in La Loche, Saskatchewan are going through that same struggle.
FULL COVERAGE: La Loche school shooting
The small community is in shock after a shooting at a school and a local residence left four people dead and several others injured.
“It’s just sad that it had to happen again,” said Lang.
READ MORE: 17-year-old boy faces murder charges after shooting in La Loche, Sask.
“These people are going through a horrendously painful, unbelievable experience that probably in their wildest imaginations they never thought they would face.”
Through everything, Lang and his family were able to forgive the young boy who murdered Jason.
“When I began to realize that if we had not gone to the place of forgiveness, then we would have been stuck in the place of anger, bitterness, resentment. And all that does is damage more people,” said Lang.
He knows it’s too soon for the families of the La Loche victims to be in a place of forgiveness right now, but he hopes one day they will.
“It’s always part of what happened to you and what happened to your family. It changes things permanently,” said Lang.
WATCH BELOW: ‘Every individual in La Loche was wounded from shooting’: La Loche Mayor