OXFORD (WWJ) With only one week before we mark the excruciating one-year anniversary of the Oxford High School shooting, Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard wrote an open letter to Oxford families and the Metro Detroit community with resources for those who are struggling.
“It’s been nearly a year, yet in many ways it seems just like yesterday,” Bouchard wrote. “On November 30, 2021, four precious souls with unlimited potential were taken from us. We remember them and miss them dearly— Hana, Tate, Madisyn and Justin.”
“Processing this is difficult, and we often feel fragile.”
He added that threats of violence against our schools “continue to plague” our communities— and cause “flashbacks, anxiety and great fear.”
“The mere act of making a threat is a crime,” he said. “… Let me be clear: I will seek to hold accountable anyone who threatens the community.”
Bouchard said continuous media coverage of the criminal case, reading the name and seeing the face of the suspect, and hearing about other school shootings and violent crimes “aggravate wounds that may never fully heal.”
The Oakland County Sheriff’s Office is working “24/7 on your safety and security,” Bouchard wrote.
“But we know many, including our staff, continue to struggle. The path forward is with each other,” he wrote. “It takes great strength to ask for and seek help.”
He said, if you’re struggling, trained counselors are on stand-by and available at (248) 653-5525. The All for Oxford Resiliency Center, at 1370 S. Lapeer Road near Clarkston Road, has a number of resources available to the community, including Comfort Canines.
“Now and forever, we are bound to each other,” he concluded. “‘Oxford Strong’ is more than a slogan. It is our ethos.”