PENTICTON, B.C. -- Residents of British Columbia's southern Okanagan will gather this evening for a candlelight vigil to honour four people shot to death in a targeted attack in Penticton.
The vigil will be held in Gyro Park in the city's downtown, just a few blocks from a duplex where 71-year-old Rudi Winter died Monday in the first of two shootings.
Police say another man and two women, all in their 60s and 70s, were fatally shot less than an hour later in a separate area of the city.
Kim Kirkham, executive director of the Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce, said the small city of 34,000 nestled between two lakes and rolling mountains is having trouble coming to terms with the violence.
"Any store I walk into -- restaurants, coffee shops -- people are talking about it. It's affected everyone," she said.
"Penticton's not very big, so you either knew them or you know somebody who knew them. It's a tough thing to fathom happening in our small community."
Community leaders are expected to speak at the event and there will be coffee and hot chocolate for those who gather, she said.
Matthew Baran, executive director of the Ooknakane Friendship Centre in Penticton, said it's not uncommon for the community to rally behind others in times of tragedy.
Vigils have been held recently for victims of domestic violence in the north Okanagan and for the Humboldt Bronco hockey players who died in a bus crash last year, he said.
"It's a very caring community organically, that's just normal."
But Baran said holding a vigil for themselves is unique.
He said the friendship centre already offers different types of healing support so it seemed natural to organize the vigil with the local chamber of commerce.
"We're a strong community and this is part of the process of how we will rise up from this travesty," he said.
RCMP Supt. Ted De Jager says 68-year-old John Brittain walked into the Penticton RCMP detachment and surrendered about one hour after the killings.
The former employee in the city's engineering department is charged with three counts of first-degree murder and one count of second-degree murder and remains in custody awaiting his next court date on May 8.