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City of Toronto to replace van attack memorial with permanent display

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Ainsley Smith Jun 04, 2018 10:05 am 127

It’s been just a little over a month since a horrific tragedy struck Toronto’s Yonge-Finch neighbourhood, when the devastating van attack claimed the lives of 10 innocent pedestrians, and injured 16 others.

Within hours of the attack, a temporary memorial had been set up along Yonge Street just steps away from where police tape previously blocked off the path of the van’s destruction.

In the weeks to follow, thousands of Torontonians visited the site to pay respect, leaving cards, flowers, candles, and compassionate messages of support.

Now, the flowers have dried up and signs of weathering can be seen on the once vibrant posters, photos, and signs, which promoted city staff to start planning a more permanent memorial.

On Sunday afternoon, Mayor John Tory joined city staff as they took down the makeshift memorial at Olive Square Park and Mel Lastman Square, which Tory called a “sombre and heartfelt tribute.”

Tory said all the items will be placed in storage until the city comes up with an appropriate way to display them so they can honour and remember the victims of the attack.

Temporary plaques were installed on Sunday, and Tory said the city plans a more permanent memorial.

“A horrific tragedy struck Yonge Street between Finch and Sheppard Ave. on April 23, 2018. Ten of our family members, friends, neighbours, and colleagues lost their lives, and another sixteen were injured,” reads the temporary plaque.

“The pain this attack caused will be slow to heal, but the response of love in the midst of tragedy will always be remembered. Our cries of sorrow are slowly being transformed into a song of healing. The City of Toronto will be consulting on a suitable permanent memorial.”

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Ainsley Smith
Ainsley is a Staff Writer at Daily Hive. She's a former Vancouverite turned Torontonian who is passionate about avocado toast, aesthetics, and avocado toast aesthetics. Story idea? E-mail her at [email protected]

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