“This piece of paper is coming to get you. This piece of paper wants to harm you,” Cst. Matt Campbell told a trio of students lined up for firearms training at the Nelson Rod and Gun Club last week. For many, it was their first time holding a gun.
But none were shy about pulling the trigger, as evidenced by the collection of shell casings littered on the ground when the Star visited. Wearing protective glasses and noise-cancelling earmuffs, each student fired a few bullets into a human-shaped target, then took it home with them as a trophy.
This was one of the first events in the Nelson Emergency Services camp, a weekend that included an introduction to forensics, learning how to do CPR, search and rescue simulations, helicopter tours, use of force training and presentations on drugs and restorative justice.
The 30 students, all in Grades 10 to 12 and from all over the West Kootenay, also got to meet Nelson’s search dog Exie and worked with local police officers such as Dino Falcone, Paul Bayes and David Laing.
The event was a collaboration between the Nelson RCMP, Nelson Fire Rescue, Nelson Search and Rescue, BC Ambulance Service, the Conservation Officer service and the Canadian Armed Forces 442 Search and Rescue Squadron.