Ugonna Nwonye, the wife of Nicholas Nwonye, a Nigerian man stabbed to death in Canada, says her grief is neverending when she thinks of the fact that her children will never see their father again.
Nicholas, 46, was on his way home from evening classes, when he was killed in a stabbing attack on a Calgary C-Train platform on Friday, June 2nd.
According to the Calgary Herald, police say the attack was unprovoked and random and have charged his assailant, a 39-year-old man with an extensive criminal history, with one count of second-degree murder.
A trained geophysical engineer, Nicholas, his wife, and three young children had only recently moved to Canada from Nigeria with the hopes of pursuing a better life.
Those who knew the deceased describe him as a kind person who, even in the briefest of meetings, left quite an impression; Ugonna says he was a model husband and father to his kids.
“He played with them; they are so fond of him. That’s why I feel so sad, I don’t know how to explain this to them,” she told CBCNews.
“They understand he’s not here. What they don’t understand is that they won’t see him again.”
Ugonna said his death is hard to accept because he was more than just a husband: they had been friends since childhood.
“Falling in love with him, getting to know him was natural,” she said.
“The truth of the matter is I’ve not even accepted that he’s dead. I find it so hard to believe that. Every day I still look at my door, that he will open the door, walk in. I don’t even know how to deal with it.
“It’s something I’ll live with. I’ll continue to remember him every day of my life.”
After the family moved to Canada, Nicholas struggled to find work in Calgary in the face of an economic downturn, so he decided to pursue a career as a caregiver, returning to school to train as a nurse. He was only four weeks in to the nursing program before his tragic death.
Ugonna says that despite the tragedy, she doesn’t regret moving to Canada, even though she constantly catches herself looking over her shoulder when she leaves the house to see if anyone is following her.
She says her Christian faith has seen her through some of the most difficult periods since she lost her husband, adding that she has also received moral and material support from the Nigerian community in Canada.
Students from Bow Valley College, where Nicholas was enrolled in the school’s practical nursing program, have also set up a GoFundMe page in his name that has raised nearly $90,000.