The victim of a vicious, random killing on the City Hall C-train platform was a father of three who’d been working two jobs to support his family while taking nursing courses at Bow Valley College.
Eighteen months ago, Nicolas Nwonye, 46, left his job as an engineer in Nigeria to bring his family to Canada.
On Friday, he died after being randomly attacked by a man with a knife.
‘A very, very calm, gentle soul’
Nwonye was just four weeks into the nursing program but he’d already made an impression.
“He stood out,” said nursing instructor Rhonda Hersak. “[he was] just pleasant, a very, very calm, gentle soul.”
Nwonye was the only man in Hersak’s class of 38 students. He was known for getting his classmates talking and stimulating discussions.
News of Nwonye’s death “devastated” both Hersak and her students.
She said there is a lot of concern about Nwonye’s wife’s financial situation. He did not have life insurance and his wife is now caring for their three children, including a three month old baby, alone.
Suspect is a career criminal from B.C.
Keeton Michel Gagnon, 39, is charged with second-degree murder.
Gagnon has a long criminal history with police in British Columbia dating back two decades. He’s a career criminal with dozens of convictions including assault with a weapon, robbery, escaping custody, and many breaches.
He is scheduled to appear in court on June 23.
The dean of the college’s health and wellness program, Nora MacLachlan says counsellors have been brought in to help students cope with Nwonye’s death.