Calgary stabbing victim's fashion sense shines through at his funeral

Many attendees wear bow ties and colourful socks at Lawrence Hong's funeral

CALGARY – Even in death stabbing victim Lawrence Hong’s keen sense of fashion shone through.

Many people attending the University of Calgary student’s funeral Wednesday emulated his style by wearing bow ties and colourful socks.

Hong, who was 27, was stabbed to death last week along with four other young people at a house party celebrating the end of classes.

He was described at the service as a social butterfly, who loved fashion and had a passion for cycling and urban planning.

Miles Hong said he’s sad that his brother won’t be able to attain his dream — he was one exam away from graduating in urban studies.

Funerals for the other victims were held earlier this week.

Matthew de Grood, the son of a veteran Calgary police officer, has been charged with first-degree murder. He is undergoing a 30-day psychiatric assessment and is to return to court in May.

The deaths of Hong, Zackariah Rathwell, Jordan Segura, Kaiti Perras and Josh Hunter have led to 1,000 university students electing to defer their final exams.

Three of the victims were students at the University of Calgary.

University registrar David Johnston said that in a normal year about 500 students will request a deferral of finals, but that number has doubled.

“It’s about twice of what we would normally see. We’re not asking any questions. No documentation is needed,” Johnston said.

“We’re really trying to help students stay well but complete the semester.”

Johnston said that with a few days left before the deadline, the number is likely to go higher, but he’s not worried about some students taking advantage of the tragedy.

“There is that possibility, but we’re more interested in the wellness of the students who have been affected. And people are affected in ways that sometimes they don’t know until they sit down and write the exam,” he said.

“It’s more important we serve those who are affected than a few students who might take advantage of it.”

The university has added two extra alternate exam dates. The latest finals can be written this semester will be June 23 and 25.

Johnston said it’s not a surprise so many students are seeking to put off their exams.

“These were very popular students. They were very involved in campus, and we’re a big university but a small community.

“It was a devastating event last week and people are still coming to grips with it.”

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