Words and Things

A montreal paul's electronic scrapbook- thoughts gathered together may end up having their meetings reported on here.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Safe and Sound (Somewhat Shaken Though)

I just went through possibly the most harrowing hour of my life. (seems it was actually 90 min.- P.B. 9/18/06) I was working in Dawson College, just back from lunch, when one of my co-workers left for lunch. But when she ventured into the corridor a cop with a gun ordered her back into the office and told her to lock the door. It was then that we looked out the windows and noticed policemen with guns hiding behind trees. At one point we saw a crowd behind the line where Dawson had been cordoned off. Suddenly, they were running away! Running away from where we were. Uh-oh....

Someone called us to tell us that there had been shootings reported in the college. Someone had a radio. We listened. It was still hard to tell what was going on because most of what was being reported were unconfirmed rumours. One thing they were saying was that there were still shootings going on. They also said the college was being evacuated. But not us. Why not?

So we were basically locked into our office while we waited to be evacuated. At one point we heard there was supposedly a gunman on the fourth floor (we're on the fourth floor). It does seem like a shooting happened on the fourth floor, because when we were being evacuated I noticed bloodstains starting near the escalator on the fourth floor. But we never heard any gunshots.

So we waited. We tried to joke around but we were tense. At one point we heard a pounding on the outer door (there's the door to our office and then there's a door to the wing). This was soon after we heard there was a gunman at large on the fourth floor. But whoever it was soon stopped.

After a while the SWAT team arrived. They evacuated room by room, taking their time to make sure they wouldn't get any unwelcome surprises. When they got to us, they yelled at us to come out with our hands up. I came out, faced with policemen like soldiers, pointing guns at me. Needless to say I did everything they told me to. They frisked us and then one officer told us to follow them. As I mentioned before I saw bloodstains by the escaltor, but saw a pool of blood near the de Maisonneuve entreance as we were being hustled off to safety.
When we made it across the line, I found myself being scrummed by the media. They wanted to know what I could tell them about what had happened. The answer: very little, apart from what I'm telling you now.

So there we are.


Blogger Katharine Lindgren said...

I'm curious about the cafeteria selected and whether that might reflect a partial motive?

What is the Dawson cafeteria's official name and what was its nickname?

Jim Lindgren

4:16 PM  
Blogger A Montreal Paul said...

I'm not sure that it has a name. According to the news reports, the guy got out of his car with some guns and started shooting, and then went in through an entrance. The entrance leads into the cafeteria. Also, it was lunchtime, so it was crowded- a good place for someone wanting to kill people. That's why he ended up there. Why Dawson? There you have me.

12:25 AM  
Blogger Mimi said...


My name is Meriem and I am graduate student at Concordia university completing an MA in social Anthropology. I am currently working on a thesis on the subject of media coverage and witness accounts of the Dawson school shooting and I cam across your blog entry. I would very much like to know if I could conduct a short interview (30-45min) with you about that day.
Please note that participation to this research is strictly confidential.

Let me know if this might interest you or if you have any further questions about the research,


Meriem Rebbani-Gosselin
Master's Candidate, Social Anthropology
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Concordia University, Montreal, Qc Canada

8:13 PM  

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