While last weekend's deadly shooting in Port Moody troubled many residents, it especially hit home for a long-time city councillor.
Coun. Bob Elliott's son grew up with the victim, Joseph Markel, and coached Markel in soccer when he was younger.
The two families also lived in the same Glenayre neighbourhood for years.
Elliott told The NOW he was saddened by the news of the shooting, describing Markel as a "sweet kid" who always had the support of his parents.
"There wasn't any problem," he said of Markel's early years.
"They're good people." Though Elliott isn't sure what happened to Markel later in life, noting neither he nor his son had spoken to him in about 10 years, he said the shooting should serve as a cautionary tale.
Elliott said he's a big proponent of cities and politicians supporting youth programs and sports as a way to keep kids out of trouble.
"If you play sports, you stay out of trouble. I've always maintained that," he said, pointing out his own kids were heavily involved in athletics, and then as teens working at jobs.
Markel was gunned down Saturday at his family's home on Wallace Wynd.
Police said the 32-year-old was "well known" to police and was believed to be an associate of the Dhak-Duhre gang.
It was the third targeted shooting this year in Port Moody.
The incident also sparked an impromptu forum Monday night where several dozen residents turned out to City Hall to discuss gang issues.
Coquitlam-Burke Mountain MLA Doug Horne echoed Elliott's views on a prescription to keeping kids out of trouble.
"Giving them activities and a place to belong and feel they're part of a group, or part of a family, is very important," he said.
He noted the provincial government made changes specifically to its gaming-grant program to include adult sports.
Horne suggested often the people attracted to gangs are at the end of their high school years or have graduated and are looking for a place to fit in.
The MLA said it's also important for society to take the glamour out of the gang lifestyle and project what really happens in these groups.
However, Horne believes the province has made inroads in squelching the gang violence, pointing out the number of gang-related deaths in the Lower Mainland has dropped during the last few years.
But even Elliott isn't sure if greater youth programs or sports could have saved Markel from ending up in the wrong crowd, adding he had a lot of opportunities where he lived.
"Anyone who grows up in Glenayre has an opportunity to do well, because Glenayre is the epitome of a family neighbourhood," he said.
"Unfortunately, some kids get caught up in different ways."