January 21st, 2017

No explanation for Desmond murder-suicide, priest tells Nova Scotia funeral

By The Canadian Press on January 11, 2017.

The flag-draped coffin of Lionel Desmond is carried into St. Peter's Church in Tracadie, N.S. on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017. Desmond killed his mother, wife and young daughter before taking his own life earlier in the month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

TRACADIE, N.S. – Hundreds of mourners packed a 200-year-old Nova Scotia church today for the funeral of a former soldier and the mother he shot to death.

Rev. John Barry told mourners it was impossible to explain a “horrific tragedy” that saw 33-year-old Lionel Desmond kill his mother Brenda, wife Shanna, 10-year-old daughter Aaliyah, and then himself.

Barry said such tragedies can make it feel that all is lost, but only God has the answers.

A stiff wind drove the cold rain sideways as mourners arrived for the first of two family funerals.

Among mourners were members of the military, Royal Canadian Legion members and a few veterans wearing trademark leather jackets with their regiments shown on the back.

Lionel’s Desmond’s casket was draped in a Canadian flag. Family and friends say he suffered from PTSD after a 2007 tour in Afghanistan.

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