UPDATED! Emily Tuck, youngest victim in Canadian massacre in Good lord, this is a book
- April 29, 2020, 12:41 a.m.
Yesterday online I found a wonderful set of photos which I’ve been eagerly trying to relocate, but with no success. They would have helped a great deal in bringing visual images to represent this 17yo young woman who died with her parents at the hand of a neighbor on a rampage late on the night of April 18, 2020.
While not exactly “photos”, the contents of this YouTube tribute give a small representation of the unique way that Emily Tuck adapted to the not-so-common skills that her father was able to teach her
(just how many people are adept at both Welding and playing a Fiddle?) (and at 17?)
What was so rare and remarkable about Emily is that perhaps throughout her life she excelled at doing what most humans do, and that is to adapt themselves to their own situations in a way that best affords them the chance to be in the best frame of mind moving forward.
She did so with the self-assurance that is always so fun to discover in young people, for it not being a certainty among them.
Emily Tuck’s father was an ex-con, he was almost certainly an alcoholic right to the end and the family was rather poor.
Those often-limiting factors were complicated by Emily having been born in Alberta and raised there until she was 12 to 14 and then, for reasons of the poor health of her father’s parents, the family of 3 moved from Emily’s mom’s hometown in Alberta to northern Nova Scotia most of a continent away. (right when a young person’s social life is likely to gain some traction, she was made to re-set everything and begin anew in a far-away locale)
One by one Emily’s grandparents in northern Nova Scotia passed away from poor health and it was at that point that Emily’s father inherited a fixer-upper home in a somewhat remote location about a 4-hour drive to the south. The home had no running water or power when the Tuck family moved in and Emily’s new school was a 40-minute, 27-mile drive away.
Lets step back in time for a while… and imagine Emily’s father Aaron, having been in early trouble with the law during his Nova Scotia upbringing before somehow making his way to Alberta and somehow landing one of the good step fathers who “put a wrench in his hands” and taught him how to make himself useful to the world around him.
Soon that led to his having met Emily’s mother, Jolene, and that further motivated the largely-changed man who evolved to be a more tolerable Aaron “Friar” Tuck. So by the time Emily came along, her father was suitably incentivized while her mother was genuinely devoted to father Aaron.
Yet Emily herself lacked the opportunities that most of us take for granted, and she was surely made to suffer her father’s many personal shortcomings from a very early age. HOWEVER, Emily seemed a person who did a most amazing job of adapting herself to her surroundings like so few teenagers tend to accomplish.
Emily took due pride in her ample skills as a car mechanic, at running a chainsaw, as a welder, and as someone who learned what in some places are survival skills at the hand of a father who was playing life by instinct. (clarity: father Aaron loved and doted on Emily, but his own limitations restricted his options for things he could teach her. Yet they lived in a remote-ish area, sort of ‘in the woods’, and father Aaron should be commended for having taught daughter Emily all that he did know)
Soon after moving from Alberta to Nova Scotia, Emily’s mother purchased for her a Fiddle, and lessons were arranged with a local musician to teach Emily (“Never call it a violin”, so read her obituary) how to play. Take to it she did, and her father was most proud of her. By the time 2020 came around, Emily was restricted to home with the rest of us as defense against the Covid virus, and in late March Nova Scotia had what they called a Covid Kitchen Party, with this sentimental performance by Emily:
Emily Tuck Covid Kitchen Party
So many young people in modern times are hell bent on keeping up with the crowd and on remaining inconspicuously in the middle of that crowd. The vast majority of those people have more than Emily Tuck ever had in the way of breaks in life. The vibe of this late, young high school senior was such that she was sure to get someplace in life, most probably a non-traditional role at which she would have excelled. But central to that wasn’t as much her father’s limited contributions to her as it was her own capability for adaptation to whatever might surround her.
I sense for no particular reason that despite the many economic limits placed upon her, that Emily’s life was fun and rewarding, and that she was largely confident going forward.
I also sense that Emily’s well-meaning father likely had an inadvertent hand in her demise as it was surely his personality and alcoholism which were central to marked conflict with the small community neighbor who took their lives on April 18, 2020.
I saw a recent photo online of a bare-chested, prison-tattooed Aaron “Friar” Tuck giving some odd-seeming hand signal with what would surely have been guns displayed on the livingroom wall had it been in the U.S., but with this being Canada, it was a quiver of arrows on the wall behind him.
The man who took 22 lives in Nova Scotia on April 18/19 first began by assaulting his domestic partner (who survived by hiding in the woods) and then hand selected his next victims from among his neighbors in their shared small community.
Emily Tuck was his youngest victim, 2 or 3 months away from high school graduation. She was glowing with pride and enthusiasm for life, and she had overcome quite a bit to be the vibrant spirit that she was. Her own impressive ability to modify her own standards from those which society tries to mold for young people made the difference in her positive trajectory even though her life ended so tragically through zero fault of her own.
Hopefully other young people out there will recognize how well Emily Tuck seemed to be doing with limited opportunities, and recognize that they too might be able to attain quite a bit for themselves by better assessing what they do have, and optimizing to the best of their abilities.
Last updated May 05, 2020
A Pedestrian Wandering ⋅ April 29, 2020
You're right, she did well for her 17 years. Hers is a hard lesson for us all to take and a tragic one too. Whatever the adults in her life did or did not do, she paid the price.
Sunshine in the Storm ⋅ May 05, 2020
Very sad case. :(