A 29-year-old man faces 18 charges, including impaired driving and dangerous driving causing death, after three siblings and their grandfather died in a horrific crash north of Toronto on Sunday afternoon.

The crash happened when a minivan carrying six members of one family, including three children, their grandfather, grandmother and great-grandmother, collided with a black SUV at the intersection of Kirby Road and Kipling Avenue north of Kleinburg just after 4 p.m. ET Sunday. A third vehicle was also involved.

Marco Muzzo, 29, of King Township appeared today in a Newmarket, Ont., court. Muzzo is from one of Canada's wealthiest families, worth $1.7 billion, according to an estimate early this year from Canadian Business

He is listed as a director of Marel Contractors, which has projects across the city, including ones in Liberty Village and the Trump Tower.

In court, Muzzo glanced quickly at his family, but mostly kept his eyes down.

"It's touch and go for him and I'm sure you could appreciate it, but I'm not going to get into the specifics," said his lawyer Rudi Covre. 

Marco Muzzo Sept 28, 2015

Marco Muzzo, 29, faces 18 charges related to the deaths of three children and their grandfather on Sunday. He appeared in court in Newmarket, Ont., on Monday. (Pam Davies/CBC)

Muzzo is expected back in court Friday. His lawyer says he will mount a vigorous defence to the charges, which are:

  • Four counts of impaired driving causing death.
  • Four counts of driving over the legal limit.
  • Four counts of dangerous driving causing death.
  • Two counts of impaired driving causing bodily harm.
  • Two counts of driving above the legal limit causing bodily harm. 
  • Two counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm.

Two people riding in the third vehicle involved in the crash were not hurt. 

Mother posts heart-wrenching message

Jennifer Neville-Lake said she first heard about the crash while watching TV. She also posted on Facebook Monday morning that "all of my children have gone home to God with my dad. My mother and grandmother are still in the hospital."

In the post to the Today's Mom Facebook group, she also thanks people for their support.

"Your kind words and messages mean so much to my husband and I as we sit in our son's empty room surrounded by our children's things," she writes. "Please keep us in your prayers. God bless."

St. Joachim Elementary, the school where Daniel was in Grade 4 and Harry was in senior kindergarten, planned to hold two special masses for the family on Monday. Tuesday's regularly scheduled regular mass will be held in honour of the children. A memory table was also set up inside the school and grief counsellors were on hand to help students. A letter about the tragedy also been sent home with parents.

A Go Fund Me page has been started to help the family.

Vaughan Fire and Rescue Chief Larry Bentley said firefighters and paramedics tried to resuscitate the children when they arrived at the scene of the crash.

"Our hearts go out to the family," Bentley said. "It is a pretty traumatic event for everyone, including our staff, but we've brought in a peer-support system because they've had a tough day," Bentley said.

York Regional Police are asking anyone with information about the crash to contact them at 1-866-876-5423, ext. 7704.

With files from CBC's Linda Ward, Neil Herland and The Canadian Press