First there's the shock of it all and then, as reality sets in, the grieving begins and, in this case, it's going to take some time.
It has now been 17 days since the Humboldt Broncos bus crash. We've cried, we've gathered for funeral services and we've talked. We've left the sticks out for the boys, convened for special memorial events and we've contributed to fundraisers.
Some of our biggest stars are sharing their gifts with us in this time of mourning. Hockey Night in Canada's Ron Maclean has produced tributes, Tom Cochrane recorded a special edition of his song "Big League" and others are sharing their feelings with the written word.
One of those people is an old friend of mine. Jonathan Gravenor was a reporter at CHAB back in '86 when I arrived. He lives and works in Australia these days. The Broncos bus crash moved him to write - about tragedy and loss but also about us - our character, our province, our game.
It's worth the read. I'm sharing it on the 800 CHAB Facebook page today.