Silence fell over a large group of family, friends and co-workers Monday afternoon at the Victoria Airport to honour and remember the loss of a loved one.
The group of around 50 people observed a moment of silence for Ramesh Sharma, a taxi driver with Yellow Cab who was killed two years ago on July 29 by an out of control car driven by an elderly woman, Shirley Zerbin, from Saanich.
“We are gathering here to remember him on this day and we hope to continue to do this each year,” said Kuldeep Singh, the President of the Victoria Taxi Association and one of Sharma’s friends and co-workers, adding that four of the drivers in attendance on Monday were with Sharma when the accident happened.
“I had known Ramesh for over 20 years, the whole community was touched by the accident,” he said.
Zerbin, 84, was charged last year with driving without due care and attention, fined $1,500 and prohibited from driving for three years.
Zerbin lost control of her car in the airport parking lot, jumped two curbs and slammed into a picnic table where a several taxi drivers were sitting playing cards.
Sharma, a father of three who had worked for (what is now) Yellow Cab for over 20 years, was taken to hospital after the incident but died from his injuries, while seven other taxi drivers and Zerbin were badly injured.
Since the accident, precautions have been taken to avoid another tragedy, said Singh.
A portable has been placed in the parking lot for the taxi drivers to sit in during breaks and while waiting for fares and a memorial garden was built in Sharma’s memory. Both projects were undertaken and funded by Transport Canada, he added.
“We want to thank Transport Canada and the Airport Authority for everything they’ve done,” said Singh.