Widow of shooting victim says she lost her “best friend”

Roxine Williams’ husband, Jim, fatally shot outside Red Deer Walmart last Friday

The wife of a man who was fatally shot outside Red Deer’s south Walmart says she has lost her best friend.

Roxine Williams told CTV News that she and her husband had stopped at the store to pick up deodorant.

He was getting back in the car when she says she heard a pop and her husband slammed the door shut and told her to stay put.

She says she heard a few more pops and, when she felt it was safe to leave the vehicle, saw her husband of 44 years on the ground.

“They took my best friend,” she said. “My husband, my travel partner. They took him away from me.”

An emotional Mayor Tara Veer said at a news conference on Monday morning she and Williams attend the same church.

She recognized him immediately when she saw a photo of him following the shooting about 6:45 p.m. Friday.

“This is an unprecedented tragedy in our community,” said Veer.

Williams was a loving husband, father and a “proud, proud grandpa,” said Veer, who fought back tears.

“He was an uncle, a cousin, a friend and a neighbour.

“He was a deeply kind and compassionate person.

“He was a man who experienced adversity in his life, but all who knew him know that he prevailed as an overcomer. All who had the privilege of crossing paths with him were better for knowing him.”

Veer said all Red Deerians have a “responsibility to Jim to remain steadfast in our solidarity with Roxine and their family.

“And we plead and we ask that we do not allow the passing of time to diminish our compassion, our concern and our care for them.

“In honour of Jim’s life and legacy we need to continue to reach out to them, not just in the immediate aftermath but in the weeks, the months and the years to come.”

Veer said the community has been shaken by the violent crime.

“I think it’s very fair to say that this is an absolutely unprecedented tragedy in our community and it has absolutely fueled fear in our community for the simple reason it was a very random and violent act in a public place.

“It has deeply shaken our community. I think our community has a lot to process, obviously, in the days and weeks to come.”

Veer said the city remains committed to its work on reducing crime and creating a safer community.

“I think (the crime) speaks deeply to the challenges we face as a community.”

But the first priority now is to support the family and the many others, including witnesses, who have been emotionally affected by the violent crime.

— With files from The Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Carl’s Jr. in Red Deer area closed

Co-owner of Carl’s Jr. in Gasoline Alley was caught using his bare hands to handle sauce in 2017

Cattle Show set to return to Stettler Jan. 31st and Feb. 1st

“Stettler, historically, has been a very strong cattle community. It was a real hub for the cattle industry.”

Quebec MP Gerard Deltell says non to Tory leadership

OTTAWA — Quebec MP Gerard Deltell says he’s decided not to enter… Continue reading

Studies question assumptions on industrial damage to Wood Buffalo park

New research suggests Canada’s largest national park is not drying out from… Continue reading

WATCH: Canadian kid shovelling snow video goes viral

Rory might just be Canada’s most popular toddler right now, thanks to… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Jan. 22 Downtown House Senior Center (5414 43 St.) in Red Deer… Continue reading

Hikers rescued after frigid night on Eagle Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C.

COQUITLAM, B.C. — Five hikers stranded on Eagle Mountain in Coquitlam, B.C.,… Continue reading

SpaceX launches, destroys rocket in astronaut escape test

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — SpaceX completed the last big test of its… Continue reading

Canada’s Jeff Smith wins way back to PDC pro darts tour via qualifying school

WIGAN, England — Canadian Jeff Smith has won his way back to… Continue reading

Skate Canada to wait on final decision for world championship team

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Ice dancers Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier headline the… Continue reading

Canadian golfer Lee finishes in fifth place at Singapore Open, Kuchar wins

SINGAPORE — Canadian golfer Richard T. Lee shot 1-over 71 on Sunday… Continue reading

Armed Forces being mobilized to help Eastern Newfoundland dig out

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The federal government is mobilizing the Armed Forces… Continue reading

Couple together for nearly 65 years die on the same day

ARNOLD, Mo. — A couple who had been together for nearly 65… Continue reading

Most Read