Ottawa truckers to honor kids who died at residential schools

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Truck drivers in Ottawa plan to run a memorial convoy to pay tribute to the children who died at residential schools on Sunday, June 20.

“The 215 Truck Rally for Indigenous Children is aimed at keeping attention on the 215 children who died in at a residential school in Kamloops, B.C., along with the 104 potential graves found in Brandon, Manitoba last week and probably hundreds yet to be found,” says Lyoness Woodstock, an organizer of the event.

Organizers of the 215 Truck Rally for Indigenous Children are hoping 215 trucks will participate in the event on Sunday. (Photo: iStock)

“We as truck drivers want the Indigenous communities to know that we support them. This is such an atrocity. It makes me sick to think about it,” he says.

The rally is the brainchild of Roger Steepe, a truck driver from the Ottawa area. “Roger got the wheels rolling on this,” Woodstock says.  

The staging area is Thomas Cavanagh Construction’s yard on Ashton Station Road near Carleton Place. Participants are requested to arrive at 8 a.m. for staging and will leave the yard between 9:15 and 9:30 a.m.

The trucks will travel east on Hwy. 417 to Kent Street in Ottawa, north to Wellington Street, east past Parliament Hill, south on Elgin Street back to Hwy 417, where participants and disperse and go back to their home bases.

The rally will likely end between 11:30 am and 12 noon.

“Our goal is to get 215 trucks to participate in the rally,” Woodstock says.

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Leo Barros is the associate editor of Today’s Trucking. He has been a journalist for more than two decades, holds a CDL and has worked as a longhaul truck driver. Reach him at

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  • I live along the convoy route and was so moved by this initiative and seeing how many drivers joined. Thank you for doing this – so many honks, so many trucks, so many signs, streamers, and balloons. A very powerful show of love.