Donations pour in for widow of Salmon Arm shooting victim - InfoNews

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Donations pour in for widow of Salmon Arm shooting victim

Matrix Gathergood has been charged with first-degree murder.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Matrix Gathergood
April 16, 2019 - 5:00 PM

SALMON ARM - The man charged with the shooting of 78-year-old Gordon Parmenter was once an elite high school athlete who came close to playing football for the province.

Matrix Gathergood, 25, was charged with the first-degree murder of church elder Gordon Parmenter and will appear in a Salmon Arm court April 23. He also faces charges of assault on another parishioner and a charge of covering his face to commit an indictable offence.

According to witnesses, Gathergood entered the Church of Christ in Salmon Arm with a rifle and shot Parmenter and another man before being wrestled to the ground by a group of parishioners who seized his rifle. Parmenter was pronounced dead at the scene and the other man was taken to hospital in a stable condition.

A Salmon Arm Observer article from 2011 shows Gathergood as a committed football player trying to make it onto U18 Team BC. According to news reports, he also wrestled and played rugby when at high school.

RCMP have said Parmenter, who was a grandfather and had fostered children over the years knew his attacker.

Parmenter had befriended Gathergood who had worshipped at the church several times, according to The Christian Chronicle. The article says the Parmenter's had tried to refer the young man to mental health services but had no luck.

A GoFundMe page, that was set up after the Parmenter's home was destroyed by fire a month ago, and has now been turned into a memorial page has already received over $12,500 in donations. The funds will go to Gordon's wife, Peggy Parmenter, who is still in temporary accommodation following the fire.

In a show of their strong Christian faith, the page offers forgiveness to Gathergood.

"This was a senseless event, though the only thing that makes sense is to honour Gord by loving others just as his Jesus did. We regard his attacker and his family with love, not hostility as Jesus loved those who nailed him to the cross," the Parmenter's granddaughter Nicolette writes on the page.

Salmon Arm Mayor Alan Harrison said the town was grieving the loss of Gordon Parmenter and being a small town everyone knew or had a connection to the Parmenters.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © iNFOnews, 2019

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