"Yesterday was the most horrifying day of my life," Sharlene Bosma said. “I have a beautiful two-year-old girl at home who now needs her mommy to hold it together, so I know that I cannot fall apart. But I am broken because part of me is gone."
She made the statement from the Ancaster Christian Reformed Church in southern Ontario where she, Tim and their extended family were longtime members. The couple were married in the church in 2010 and their daughter was baptized there in 2011.
Facing a wall of television cameras and bright lights, Bosma fought back tears, her voice wavering occasionally as she expressed thanks for the support her family has received.
Over the past 10 days, she said they have been overwhelmed by the volunteer search and social media efforts and for countless flowers, cards and meals donated by strangers.
"We know and take some comfort in that Tim has touched so many people, and any words that I choose will never be able to truly express our gratitude."
Bosma promised that the couple’s young daughter would know how loved her father was and how much he loved his daughter.
“He would sometimes watch her sleep or chase her through the house to tickle,” she said.
“She will know how much he was loved by me and his family, his friends and even perfect strangers.”
She concluded by saying her husband will always be loved and remembered before offering an emphatic “I love you, Tim,” before being ushered out of the hushed room.
Bosma’s father shared information about a trust fund set up for donations to Sharlene and her daughter, in response to the many offers made by the public to collect money for the family. Donations can be made at any TD Trust to branch number 2047, account number 6332096.
A police source told CBC News that investigators believe Bosma may have been killed as the result of the attempted carjacking.
The same police source said that Bosma's truck was found with seats missing. A spokesperson for Hamilton police wouldn't comment on this information.
Police also announced that they have received more than 700 tips from the public and continue to urge people to call 905-546-2100 with information.
On Wednesday morning the only suspect arrested in connection with the death of Tim Bosma appeared in court.
Dellen Millard will plead not guilty to a charge of first-degree murder in the death of Bosma, according to his lawyer.
Deepak Paradkar has described his client as "very shaken up, very concerned, wondering how one ends up in a situation like this."
Bosma's burned remains were found after he disappeared more than a week ago after leaving his home with two men who wanted to test drive a truck he had posted for sale online, police said.
Millard, 27, of Toronto, who had already been charged with forcible confinement and theft over $5,000 in the case, walked into a Hamilton court Wednesday morning, unshaven and looking tired, to hear that he has now been charged with first-degree murder. He was wearing a white dress shirt and beige dress pants. He no longer has a Mohawk haircut.
Millard has been ordered to not communicate with a list of people. He is scheduled to make a video appearance in court on June 13.
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Bosma was last seen on May 6. He was with the two men in the truck he had posted for sale on the Kijiji and AutoTrader websites. Police believe Bosma was killed the night he disappeared.
Suspect 'shaken up,' lawyer says
Paradkar said the plan for the defence right now is to remand the matter for about a month or so, to get some initial disclosure of the evidence from the Crown.
"This is a hugely complex case with multi-jurisdictions, multi-search warrants. We expect disclosure to take months. This is not going to be a quick thing, so we expect at least for a number of months Mr. Millard will just be making remand appearances until we get the case."
Paradkar said Millard is choosing not to speak to police about the investigation.
"At the end of the day, under the constitution, Canadian citizens have the right to remain silent," he said.
Bosma created two online ads – one on Kijiji and one on AutoTrader – for his 2007 black Dodge Ram he intended to sell. Hamilton police Sgt. Matt Kavanagh confirmed during a press conference last week Bosma left only a cellphone number as a point of contact.
Police search for other suspects
At a news conference on Tuesday, police said Bosma's remains were "burned beyond recognition" and two more suspects are being sought.
“Video evidence that we've now recovered shows that when Mr. Bosma's vehicle left his residence, there was a second vehicle following,” Kavanagh said.
He said police have not identified any of the other suspects.
Investigators have been searching a farm near Cambridge, Ont., that is owned by the Millard family. The Hamilton police forensic unit set up a large tent at the rear of the property on Tuesday. Officers could be seen carrying what appeared to be buckets of soil and passing it through large sifting screens.
Hamilton mounted police are also doing a grid search of the field on horseback as well as conducting another search by foot of the nearby wooded area.
Bosma's truck targeted
Jim Wilson said he used to live next to the farm two decades ago.
“When you think about killing somebody for a truck, it doesn’t make sense,” said Wilson. “I just wonder if it’s something bigger.”
Hamilton police said that the truck was targeted.
- 40 Waterloo police officers involved in Bosma investigation
Everyone who knew Bosma, from his closest family members to friends he hasn't seen in years, have the same description: A kind-hearted friend who was generous with laughs and love.
"He was as great a guy as everyone says he was, if not a hundred times more," said Edward De Groot, a neighbour of Bosma's extended family for 20 years.
- Tim Bosma dead, mourning begins
Hamilton police homicide Det. Sgt. Matt Kavanagh, in a more formal way, echoed the same assurance that Bosma is exactly who his family says he was.
"The picture that is being painted of Mr. Bosma is what we have found in our investigation," he said.
Community reacts with shock
The Christian Reformed Church that the Bosma's belong to is like one big, extended family, their members say. And like family, when one of their own has to deal with tragedy, they all come together to help them though.
"When people have a hard time — and in this case it is a particularly hard time — we come around them like a family would," Henry Hess, director of communications for the Christian Reformed Church North America said.
- Bosma's church community will grieve with family
"We've been sharing information about the family and been on the lookout for the truck. We've been working as an extended family to try to look out when someone is in trouble."
Ed Glasbergen, a member of the church, said when he found out, he said the first thing he did was pray for Bosma's family.
"It's part of our family, it really is. It just hits you like a ton of bricks. It was hard to imagine a good outcome, but we really prayed for a good outcome."
The investigation has taken police to several locations across southern OntarioSuggest a correction