'There's some fiddle for ya': Mass shooting victim's favourite instrument donated in her memory
SYDNEY, N.S. -- The musical spirit of a 17-year-old girl killed in Nova Scotia’s mass shooting will live on through a very special fiddle.
Emily Tuck was the youngest victim of the mass shooting, which claimed the lives of 22 people, including her mother Jolene Oliver and father Aaron Tuck, in April.
Tuck’s fiddle teacher, Shawn MacDonald, is honouring the memory of his student through her favourite instrument, thanks to the generosity of another musical Nova Scotian.
Touched the by teen’s talent, Nadine Sarty of Bridgewater, N.S., raised funds to purchase a fiddle, along with a year of free lessons, which she has donated to MacDonald to be gifted to a student in Tuck’s memory.
“For about a month we were shopping for a fiddle, trying to pick out what was appropriate,” said MacDonald, who lives in Sydney, N.S. “She picked it up and had a plaque put on the back of it and it says, ‘In memory of Emily Tuck, there’s some fiddle for ya.’ Something that will probably stick with me for a long, long, long time.”
Before she was killed, Tuck played the fiddle in the popular “Ultimate Online Nova Scotia Kitchen Party” Facebook page, ending the tune with “there’s some fiddle for ya.”
On Sunday, MacDonald travelled to Portapique, N.S., -- where the violent rampage began and where the Tuck family lived -- to receive the donated fiddle from Sarty.
“It feels beautiful, it feels wonderful,” said MacDonald of the instrument. “Right now I have goosebumps. Every time I pick this up, that’s what I’ll get, is goosebumps.”
Outside a memorial honouring the victims, MacDonald and Sarty -- who plays guitar – then played a tune together in memory of Tuck, her parents, and all the lives lost in April.
“Emily Tuck was a wonderful student of mine. I loved her very much, I loved her strength, her passion for music … she was a big loss in my life,” said MacDonald before playing the fiddle donated in her memory.
“There’s some fiddle for ya,” he said to end the tune.
He says the fiddle and year of free lessons will go to someone who shares the same characteristics and passion for music as Tuck.
“I do believe that everybody who wants to learn to play the violin, or any instrument, should be able to have something,” said MacDonald. “In Emily’s case, they didn’t have an awful lot, but she had talent.”