Police have identified Aaron Anthony Thompson

Stabbing victim was doing everything right in life

Aaron Thompson had a ready smile, a glint in his eye, and wrote poetry. But his bright future vanished after he was stabbed to death Monday.

Aaron Thompson had a ready smile, a glint in his eye, and wrote poetry. To some observers it seemed as though a bright future lay ahead of him after he graduated from Alberni District Secondary in 2010.

But hopes for the future vanished Monday morning as Thompson, 21, lay dying on Redford Street, the victim of a stabbing.

“When I heard how old the victim was I worried that it was someone I taught,” Kama Callicum said.“Then my heart just sank when I found out it was him.”

Callicum found out about the death shortly after news reports on Monday. A mutual friend e-mailed her to say Thompson was the victim.

Callicum was a teacher at Alberni District Secondary School, and first met Thompson when he was in Grade 9.

She recalls a quiet boy who hurt below the surface but who wasn’t enshrouded with corrosive defeatism. “He wasn’t disrespectful of me, and he always did his work and handed in his assignments,” she said. “He was a solid C-plus, B student.”

Thompson had a difficult early life and lived with one of two older sisters while he attended school. “He said later he knew he was a handful but that he was grateful for what she did for him,” Callicum said.

“Aaron thought the world of his sisters.”

Former Port Alberni resident Sherri McKinnon worked with Thompson and his brother Archibald in an after-school program at Redford School in 2000.

“Aaron believed in fairness and had an inner strength that I admired,” McKinnon said. “He was mature beyond his years as a result of the difficulties he faced.”

McKinnon ran into Thompson at Canadian Tire last year. The boy she first met had grown into a young man, and he talked about the dreams he wanted to make come true.

“I felt that he had managed to overcome the obstacles he faced…and that a very successful future awaited him,” McKinnon said.

In high school, Thompson enjoyed reading and writing poetry, composing several pieces for a girl he was seeing then, Callicum said.

He initially thought his poems had to rhyme, but later got away from the practice and adopted free verse style, she said. “His later pieces always had emotion in them, and his way of expressing his thoughts evolved.”

Thompson graduated from ADSS in 2010 and attended a special First Nations grad ceremony recognizing aboriginal graduates.

“He was dressed in his suit and I’ll never forget the tie he wore with a design on it. He just beamed,” Callicum said. “He talked about wanting to join the military and he was hopeful for a future.”

Callicum lost touch with Thompson after his graduation but ran into him recently in Port Alberni.

He was smiling, friendly and positive and said he wanted to take classes at Vancouver Island University, she said.

“He is the last student I taught who  I thought would ever meet an end like this,” Callicum said.

“It’s so hard to believe that this could happen to a kid who was doing everything right.”

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Twitter.com/AlberniNews

Just Posted

Learn about solar panels with Alberni Valley Transition Towns

Monthly meeting will feature a talk from a solar panel expert

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks cheese linked to 5 E. coli cases in B.C.

People are asked to throw out or return ‘Qualicum Spice’ cheese

Jim’s Clothes Closet celebrates 50th anniversary

Store began in Port Alberni, expanded on Vancouver Island and beyond

BC Ferries passengers wait to leave Vancouver Island after Remembrance Day

Traffic aboard BC Ferries slows after Remembrance Day long weekend

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs victorious at home

Goaltender John Hawthorne earns second shutout

VIDEO: Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

Vancouver Island remembers

Important stories shared as Islanders salute those who made the greatest sacrifice

Disabled boy has ‘forgiven’ bullies who walked on him in stream, mom says

A Cape Breton teen who has cerebral palsy was told to lie in a stream as other kids walked over him

Letters shed light on state of mind of B.C. mom accused of daughter’s murder

Trial of South Surrey mother Lisa Batstone begins in BC Supreme Court

Vancouver man must pay $22,000 after breaking strata rules

Peter Gordon took his fight over his rented condo to the civil resolution tribunal, but lost

Search and rescue piggybacks plucky injured senior out of Vancouver Island woods

Rescue crews don’t have same success with dog swept away by Comox Valley river

Canada Post no longer guarantees delivery times amid more rotating strikes

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers closed two major processing centres in Ontario and B.C.

B.C. city councillor resigns as AutismBC director amid SOGI controversy

AutismBC president Gary Robins says Laurie Guerra’s resignation is effective Nov. 12

McGill students vote overwhelmingly to change Redmen team nickname

Student union held a referendum after a campaign by Indigenous students

Most Read