TORONTO – Students at C.W. Jefferys are wearing purple, Wednesday, in memory of Violet Liang, who died after being hit by a truck on the first day of school.
Violet would have turned 15 on Wednesday.
The Grade 10 student died across from Elia Middle School at Sentinel Road and Lamberton Boulevard after being hit by a large truck just before 8 a.m. Tuesday.
“We are talking about a student that really enriched this building, a fantastic student that did very well in our classes,” said Monday Gala, principal of C.W. Jefferys.
Liang was enrolled in an enrichment program at C.W. Jefferys.
“This was … a 90 per cent student, a fantastic student whom I shared a few really very good moments with in the school,” Gala said.
He said grief counsellors were at C.W. Jefferys to provide support to students and staff.
Police said the collision happened around 8 a.m. as a truck driver was turning onto Lamberton Boulevard, near Keele Street and Finch Avenue West. Liang was struck as she was crossing the street at a crosswalk.
She was pronounced dead on the scene.
Police on the scene told 680News that there was no indication that the teenager had headphones on or was texting while crossing.
There is no word on whether charges will be laid.
The incident is a “really unfortunate reminder” about the importance of road safety, Education Minister Liz Sandals said.
“This is back-to-school safety time, and no matter what sort of a vehicle you’re driving, we all as adults need to remember that kids are really enthusiastic at this time of the year,” she said.
TDSB Chair Chris Bolton described the girl’s death in an interview with CityNews as “absolutely devastating.”
Bolton phoned Mayor Rob Ford to discuss the child’s death and wants city council to explore whether trucks should be banned from school zones during certain hours such as 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., which some areas have adopted.
In March, five-year-old Kayleigh Callaghan-Belanger, who was on her way home from school with friends, was struck and killed by a city garbage truck in Scarborough.
A 64-year-old driver was charged with careless driving and making an unsafe turn.
–With files from CityNews