Plans underway to create permanent way to honour victims of June 6 attack
London, Ont. Mayor Ed Holder says there are plans to create a permanent way to honour the Muslim family killed in an alleged hate-motivated attack last month.
"London city council passed a motion to honour this family by putting a memorial at that corner."
Holder said discussions are underway with representatives from the Afzaal family, but tweeted that it will "move at a pace set by the family."
London Muslim Mosque Imam Abd Alfatah Twakkal says, "It’s a beautiful idea just in terms of being able to provide something for the community to reflect upon -- because with any memorial it’s important to understand the purpose behind it."
But the Muslim community also agrees it must meet with the approval of the the Afzaal family.
Salman Afzaal, his wife Madiha Salman, their 15-year-old daughter Yumnah and the family's matriarch Talat Afzaal were struck and killed at the intersection of Hyde Park Road and South Carriage Road while walking June 6.
The family's nine-year-old son was treated in hospital for his injuries. He continues to recover.
Meanwhile, officials from the mosque and the City of London began cleaning up the memorial at the crash site Wednesday.
Earlier today representatives of the Afzaal family, the @LondonMosque and City staff began the process of removing old flowers & keepsake items at the corner of Hyde Park & South Carriage. pic.twitter.com/nlrPmLOtyj— Josh Morgan (@JoshMorganLDN) July 7, 2021
"Toys and keepsakes will be kept and presented to the family. Flower & plant materials will be composted separately and made available to the family for their use," says Councillor Josh Morgan. "New materials placed at the site will be treated with the same care and respect when they are removed."
Londoner Nathan Veltman, 20, is charged with four counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder. Police allege he targeted the family because of their Muslim faith.
But the Muslim community says the memorial is a way of turning hateful action into a message of hope.
"This is something that is always going to remain imprinted on our minds and in our hearts in terms of that show of love that came from so many different people from so many different places," says Twakkal.
- With files from CTV News London's Nick Paparella