Bus route 76 involved in Ottawa bus-train crash to be retired
Commemorative plaque/marker to be installed at location yet to be determined
The city plans to retire OC Transpo route No. 76 and install a commemorative plaque to mark the first anniversary of the bus-train crash that left six people dead on Sept. 18, 2013.
The decision comes after consulting the families involved, Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson wrote in an email to councillors on Friday.
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"My desire was to find ways to remember loved ones lost in a manner that all families could comfortably share," Watson wrote. "I believe that a complete understanding and concurrence is necessary, as we do not want to do anything that could put any one family into an uncomfortable situation at any point in time."
Flags at city facilities will be lowered to half-mast on Sept. 18 and a minute of silence will be observed during a transit commission meeting currently scheduled for Sept. 17.
A location for the plaque will be determined in consultation with the families, Barrhaven councillor, Jan Harder, and transit commission chairwoman, Coun. Diane Deans.
Harder said later in the day that bus route 72 will be created in its place when OC Transpo releases its fall schedule.
Victim's father says it will help heal
Harder will also be organizing a multifaith ceremony for her community, saying she's heard from people living there that it's something they want.
"There's not a day that goes by when I don't have someone in the community talking to me about it, emailing me about it," she said.
"A lot of people want to do something," she said.
Michael More, whose 35-year-old son Rob died in the crash, said Friday that representatives from the mayor's office had recently reached out to him and asked about ways to commemorate the crash.
"It's nice the city is remembering this… I'd definitely prefer it never happened and I'd wake up tomorrow morning and it's just a bad nightmare," he said.
"But since it did happen, I think it's nice they're making the effort to do this and I think it does help heal."
He said his family and friends have honoured Rob in a few ways, such as naming a bench at the Canadian Museum of Agriculture and a game room at IBM (both former workplaces) after him.
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada's investigation into the fatal crash continues.