This past year our office was graced to have a student from the International EF Language School with us. Part of their program is to have students from other countries work part time pro bono in local businesses in areas of their interest to gain experience and continued English Language proficiency in the working environment - all in all a super program. [Name witheld] from Norway had requested working in our office to gain experience in how American Real Estate works. Having just graduated High School last year, he was a very young and energetic and handsome presence in our office. We all truly enjoyed having him around and were sorry to see him go.
When I heard about the recent events in Oslo, Norway I sent him an email:
Hi [name witheld],
I hope you weren't a part of / hurt in the recent events in Oslo. My thoughts are with you and your country.
Thank you for thinking of me John. I am safe. A very sad event for Norway and the Norwegian people. People are not believing something like this ever could happen here, This will have big influence on the country for a long time forward. Turns out that there was 1 single 32old right-side-extremist. He had bought a small farm and ordered 6tons of fertilizer (in may 2011) which he then made a homemade bomb out of, he placed it inside a car outside the government-building. He then went of to "Utøya" ,a island where the ruling party of the country had a political youth-camp for upcoming politicians. While he was on his way the bomb went of and took the polices attention. He then took a boat out to the island where he gave himself out for being a policeman -going to inform the youngsters about the blast in Oslo. While the young got together around him to listen, he pulled out a semi-automatic gun and started mercilessly shooting them down. He also told others to come out of their hiding because he now got the situation under control -followed by murdering the people which thought they where walking to safety. The total number of people on the island was close to 600. 85 is reported dead + some more are still missing. Now the more frightening storey form the witnesses are coming in after the other. People are telling about pretending dead laying feets from the murder, feeling the heat from the gun barrel and hearing him breath.
The whole thing ended when the police arrived and the gunman instantly surrendered.
It's frightening and unbelievable that this tragedy hits peaceful Norway.
John M Scott, Broker / Owner, Scott Keys Properties, Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE), Council of Real Estate Brokerage Managers (CRB), serving San Francisco and the surrounding San Francisco Bay Area