When a snowstorm hit in February, it left a trail of destruction in its wake, destroying nearly half the homes in the small town of Milton, Alta., and forcing a string of evacuations.
The town’s only power was cut, and the residents had no heating and no running water.
But by the end of March, more than 50 homes had been saved, thanks to an amazing community effort.
The residents of Milton set up a shelter, put up a tent, and took care of each other.
On April 5, the fire was contained and Milton residents were able to return home.
On May 10, the Milton community organized a campfire and held a picnic, which turned into a community vigil.
The community was so touched by their response that they decided to do a town hall, and they called the event “the Milton Fire Walk” to remember the people who saved their homes.
They started the event with a candlelight vigil on the hill above Milton, and it went from there.
At the vigil, people from Milton, across Alberta, came together to show support for the people of Milton and their families.
On Sunday, April 12, Milton residents and members of the community marched to the community centre to gather for the Milton FireWalk.
It was a big turnout, with people coming from across the province and all over the world.
And they showed up in numbers they hadn’t seen before.
In the evening, members of Milton’s police, fire, and emergency services all took part in the event.
They came together as one community to support each other, share memories, and remember those who were lost in the fire.
This event is a reminder that we’re all in this together, said Constable Ryan Leblanc.
“We’re all living in Milton right now.
We are not going anywhere.
We’re just going to continue to work together.”
It’s a message that’s resonated throughout the province, with the provincial government hosting a townhall in Milton on May 12 to discuss how to support people in the province during disasters.
In Winnipeg, Winnipeg Police Chief Marc-Andre Liseau said he’s aware of the need for people to help each other during a time of crisis, and said the community has been a great resource during the wildfires.
“The communities are just like family, we all love each other and we all want to do what’s best for the family, whether it’s going to get you home or staying warm in your own home,” he said.
“When a community has that bond, it’s like a family.”
As for the town of Nelson, the Nelson community has offered a shelter and a safe-house to its residents.
Chief Robert Eger has been working with the community to coordinate the safe-housing and shelter.
“It’s really just been a really great response, and a real community effort,” he told CBC News.
“There are so many people who have been there since the fire started, and there’s a real strong community spirit.
And you can tell that it’s the support that the community provides that has helped make this town so special.”
With files from The Canadian Press.