Tragedy can (and does) strike at any time of year.
But the impact of any type of calamity, whether it be a fire, theft or personal injury, is somehow more keenly felt when it happens around the holidays.
That’s been the case in Langley for at least the past three Decembers. And each time, the community has stepped up in a big way.
In 2014, Chris Lafrenier was badly beaten and robbed as he walked home from the Langley City bus loop.
Langley residents responded in force, and within two days of publication of the Times’ story, more than $8,000 had donated to help provide a merry Christmas for the Langley man, who was unable to work due to the extensive injuries he suffered in the attack.
One year later, the relatively new-to-Langley Sources Food Bank suffered a major setback when one of its trucks was stolen. This happened around the same time that $1,000 in gift certificates were taken and $1,300 worth of fuel was racked up on the food bank’s gas card.
It was also in December that Sources’ second collection vehicle chose to break down.
Within days, the food bank had fielded multiple offers of vehicle loans before four companies joined forces and handed them the keys to a brand new cube van.
In addition, more than $15,000 was donated by a trio of local credit unions. And that doesn’t include the individual donations that were made to help the service organization get back on its feet in time for Christmas.
We are seeing that generosity of spirit once again this year, following the Dec. 11 fire that left more than 100 people homeless two weeks before Christmas. A Tuesday night concert and auction night, which raised more than $50,000 for the displaced residents is just the latest in a host of events and other fundraising efforts.
It’s our fervent hope that we don’t see yet another tragedy strike this (or any other) holiday season. But if it happens, it’s comforting to know that Langley residents, who embody the true spirit of the season of giving, will step up to help.