Hundreds expected to attend candlelight vigil in honour of GTA victims killed in Iran plane crash

Hundreds are expected to attend a vigil planned for Thursday evening in honour of Toronto-area victims killed in the Iran plane crash.

The event comes one day after dozens of Torontonians were identified as victims of the Ukrainian airliner crash in Tehran that killed all 176 passengers on board.

From 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., friends, family and members of the community are expected to flood into the North York Civic Centre, located at 5095 Yonge St., near Yonge Street and Sheppard Ave. W, to mourn the lives lost.

The crash sent shock waves across Toronto or “Tehranto,” a name dubbed by many people of Iranian descent living in the city.

About 100,000 Iranians live in the GTA. It is the second largest Iranian community outside Iran, surpassed only by Los Angeles.

The Ukrainian airliner crashed in Iran on Wednesday, killing 63 Canadians. It was one of the biggest, single death tolls involving Canadian citizens in recent times.

A young family of three, university students and numerous professionals from across the GTA are among the 138 victims headed for Canada.

The community and many Canadians remains in mourning on Thursday.

A vigil was held Wednesday night at the University of Toronto to honour the victims. Several of the school’s students were identified as among the dead.

The university issued a statement saying it was deeply saddened to see its students’ names on the plane’s manifest.

“The university’s three campuses are united in mourning the loss of the victims and offering sympathy and condolences to their families and friends,” said a U of T statement, noting it would provide more information in the coming days.

CBC Toronto is still working to confirm the identities of other victims believed to have ties to the GTA.


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