Alberta woman who survived being held hostage reunites with first responders IG News

Irshadgul News report,

Friday was a rare and special day for members of the Lethbridge Police Service, Lethbridge Fire and EMS and Alberta Health Services.

They met Katherine Linder, who had escaped being stabbed in the neck several times during a hostage situation in the city of Lethbridge on 14 July.

Many of those present played a role in saving his life.

“It’s absolutely overwhelming to see the number of people involved, and none of it was small,” Linder said.

“Now I have faces. At the time,[it was]just hands and voices going: ‘Are you okay? Stay with us.'”

According to police, Linder was one of four Lethbridge Legal Guidance employees in the building on that summer afternoon when a client was asking to speak to a specific lawyer.

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The suspect was told that the person she was looking for was not there, and later asked to use the bathroom. After about 10 minutes, the suspect emerged and allegedly threatened to kill the employees.

Police said she was armed with an airsoft handgun and a knife. The three men managed to escape, but Linder remained inside.

Linder told the media on Friday that she started thinking about “random things” during those moments.

“The vacation I had planned, my daughter, was wondering if my coworkers and friends were safe,” she recalled.

According to officials, an employee called 911 and crisis negotiators tried to talk on the phone with the suspect for about an hour, but once they determined there was an imminent threat to the victim’s life, they entered the building.

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Courtney Shaw is now facing multiple charges related to the incident, including attempted murder.

“(These incidents) are still fortunately very rare,” said LPS Staff Sgt. Leon Borbandi. “I’ve been a police officer for 26 years and this is the first incident I’ve been involved in.”

Tyler Skage and his companions were two paramedics who helped treat Linder.

“The LPS had already done a great job, they had already put in place measures to control Katherine’s bleeding and her stab wounds,” Skaze said. “My partner and I really packed up and (we transferred her to the hospital) Katherine as quickly as possible.

There, Catherine was treated by hospital staff and underwent surgery.

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“There’s a team of surgeons and anesthesiologists and respiratory therapists who were involved in providing the response, so again it was a team effort,” said AHS senior operating office Colin Zeeber.

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“It’s obviously a super unique and powerful situation,” Skage added of Friday’s reunion. “It’s not everyday that we meet with our patients, especially with an outcome like this.”

This is an opportunity for which Linder is grateful.

“Thank you, each one of you. You did your job. You did your job well. I thank you. On behalf of my entire family, I thank you.”

And while she was already “a person to live in the moment,” Linder said the test confirmed her positive outlook on life.

“Live your life, buy shoes, smell the flowers, eat the cake,” she said.

“Life is short. Have fun. Appreciate the people who are with you.”


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