Calgary

Late Calgary MLA Manmeet Bhullar honoured with CBE Legacy Award

The CBE has awarded its second Legacy Award to Manmeet Bhullar, the late Calgary MLA who died in a car crash a year ago.

School in Martindale to also be named in Bhullar's honour

Bhullar, 35, was killed last November by an out-of-control semi-trailer on the highway between Edmonton and Calgary, after he pulled over to help a stranded motorist. (CBC)

The Calgary Board of Education has awarded its second Legacy Award to Manmeet Bhullar, the late Calgary MLA who died in a car crash a year ago.

"This award is being made posthumously to recognize the significant and lasting impact Manmeet has had on the province and the city of Calgary," said board chair Joy Bowen-Eyre.

Bhullar was elected MLA of Calgary-Montrose in 2008, making him the youngest member to be elected to the province's 27th Legislature. He was re-elected in Calgary-Greenway in 2012.

On Nov. 23, 2015, Bhullar was killed on the QE2 when he stopped on the side of the road to help another driver and he was hit by a vehicle.

Bhullar's family accepted the award on his behalf at the CBE board meeting on Tuesday.

Holding back tears, Bhullar's older sister said she wished her brother had the chance to contribute more to his community before his death.

"I always wanted my brother to be recognized for his contributions, not simply because that's what a proud older sister would want," said Tarjinder Bhullar. 

"But because I knew that through his recognition, people like him would realize that maybe you don't look a certain way or you don't even act a certain way, but you belong," she said. 

"You belong to a larger community and you have a responsibility to make sure that community thrives," she added.

The award celebrates public education in the city as well as "the individuals who have contributed to our communities," said Bowen-Eyre.

"Manmeet served our communities with his energy, his passion and his whole heart," said Bowen-Eyre.

She said Bhullar was a "passionate advocate" for youth, justice and education.

In June, the board announced that a public school in the northeast Calgary community of Martindale would be named after Bhullar.

The Manmeet Singh Bhullar School is expected to open in September 2017.

Manmeet graduated from Lester B. Pearson High School before going to Athabasca University and the University of Windsor.

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