A Red Deer artist is gathering messages of support for the family of the physician who was slain in his clinic.
Recently, the 59-year-old artist, and former nurse, posted a photo of a painting she made based on a portrait she saw on Facebook of Dr. Walter Reynolds and his family.
Reynolds was fatally attacked while working at the Village Mall Walk-In Clinic on Aug. 10.
She plans to give the painting to a friend of the Reynolds, to pass it on to the doctor’s wife, Anelia, along with messages from the community.
“I wanted this to be for her, a reminder of, of course, a lovely family moment. But also a reminder that the community cares and we weep with her and want to be a support for her as she walks through this journey of grieving and loss,” said the artist, who requested that her name not be used, saying she wanted to make the community’s response the focus.
Messages can be emailed to email@example.com.
“The way to make this about community is to gather support from the community, print them all out, and give them to her with the painting, so when she looks at the painting, that’s what she associates with the painting. I don’t want it to be about the artist.”
The artist, who started painting five years ago, said she received permission to paint the beach-side portrait from one of Reynolds’ colleagues.
She said while working on the canvas, she couldn’t help but think about the family’s pain and horror.
“It’s acrylic paint, but there’s lots of tear drops on it,” she said.
She said the painting will be passed on to the family after more e-mail messages have been collected. Facebook messages will also be gathered.
“Too often, we stay quiet because we’re afraid we don’t have the right words. There are no right words. It doesn’t have to be fancy. It doesn’t have to be profound. It can be as simple as ‘we care.’
“There’s not any words I can write, or speak to them, that is going to take their pain away, so we don’t have to try to come up with some brilliant statement. Whatever is in your heart to share is worth sharing.”
Deng Mabiour, 54, of Red Deer, who is charged with first-degree murder in the matter, returns to court Oct. 14.