‘Nathan is part of me:’ Man who helped Cpl. Cirillo before he died remembers Ottawa shooting

Written by admin on 26/04/2020 Categories: 老域名出售

Thursday marks the one-year anniversary of the violent attack on Ottawa that took the life of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo and for Martin Magnan he has thought about the young man every day.

Magnan, then working as a media adviser in Ottawa, was walking past the National War Memorial on his way to a meeting when gunman Michael Zehaf Bibeau shot Cirillo twice in the back before launching an attack on Parliament Hill’s Centre Block.

Magnan was one of several people who rushed to aid the dying soldier and was with him until the final moments holding his hand.

“It is really different because Nathan is part of me. I think about him almost daily,” Magnan told Global News. “I’ve thought about him a lot when I think of my own children who are 14 and 19.”

WATCH: Ceremony held in Hamilton, Ont. to remember Cpl. Nathan Cirillo 1-year after death


The 47-year-old helped the mortally wounded reservist from Hamilton, Ont. along with Barbara Winters, an Ottawa lawyer, Margaret Lerhe, a nurse, and Anthony Wiseman, a driver for Canada’s Defence Department, as well as another soldier.

“I was just walking by when the shots rang out. There were a lot of sirens that day. I ran over and they were already in action,” Magnan said.

“The military guys were so focused. When Anthony came over he went right down beside [Cirillo] and said ‘hang on buddy.’ It was really incredible to watch those guys go. Margaret and Barb they came in and we all got into our routine. Things just kind of happened as they did. It was very surreal.”

IN PHOTOS: One-year anniversary of the Ottawa shooting 

An armed officer dashes across Wellington in downtown Ottawa Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

Ottawa police appeared prepared for an imminent confrontation near the Rideau Centre Wednesday afternoon, Oct. 22.

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

One officer, armed with rifle, covers for another running behind a concrete barrier on Wellington Oct. 22.

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

Police clear the area outside the Chateau Laurier as they search for suspect following War Memorial shooting in Ottawa Wednesday.

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

Officers confer during their search for a shooter across the street from the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa Wednesday Oct. 22

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

An armed officer takes cover on Wellington in downtown Ottawa.

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

Police vehicles in downtown Ottawa Wednesday, Oct. 22

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

An Ottawa police officer on motorcycle approaches a cordoned-off area in downtown Ottawa Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Anna Mehler Paperny/Global News

Paramedics later arrived and continued CPR but the wounds were too severe and the 24-year-old died at the foot of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

After the tragic events one year ago, Magnan says it is great to see people still walking past the memorial and always takes a moment to recognize the sentries standing guard.

READ MORE: Reservists like Nathan Cirillo are worth $1.8M less to the feds. Why?

“This whole area is quite personal to me now and to my family as well. I walk by here every day. On my way to work I walk by and on my way home I walk by,” he said. “It’s great to see so many people here all the time, tourists, people walking by. It’s fantastic. This is a good place for me.”

“I see who is over there and it looks good. I’m happy they’re there and I’m happy they came back. I want that program to keep going. It’s a wonderful thing.”

Kevin Vickers, Canada’s former Sergeant-at-Arms who was credited with stopping the shooter, said Thursday that his thoughts are with the victims’ families and the first responders.

Magnan says that while he never got the chance to meet Cirillo he’s heard stories about how great the young father was.

“Not knowing Nathan, you know, to find out little bits and pieces of his life and see how awesome he was,” Magnan said. “It’s a great loss for his family and that hurts, it hurts me personally.”

READ MORE: Cpl. Cirillo’s death spurred injured reservist benefit changes: Kenney

On Wednesday evening, dozens of people turned out for a ceremony in Cirillo’s honour in his home town of Hamilton, Ont. Cirillo, a member of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders regiment, left a son, Marcus.

A national ceremony will be held in Ottawa Thursday to commemorate the lives of Cirillo as well as Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent who was killed almost two weeks earlier in a separate attack in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que.

Magnan said he still tries to keep in touch with the people who tried to help that day and says the family has “taken the burden of Canada” in the wake of the devastating incident.

“That family has taken the burden of Canada for this and, with this anniversary is part closure and I hope they find the privacy and the space to move on that they truly deserve.”


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