NDP member Tim Chu writes his message to Jack Layton at the late party leader's one-year memorial at Vancouver Convention Centre.

Jack Layton remembered at Vancouver Convention Centre

The late leader of the NDP and Canada's official opposition died a year ago Wednesday, Aug. 22, from cancer.



One year after the late NDP leader died from cancer, Jack Layton was remembered at a small public gathering on August 22, at the foot of Vancouver Convention Centre at Canada Place.

Celebrated by a smattering of orange t-shirts – some with his face on them – and a cooler packed to the brim with orange Crush soda, Layton’s supporters came to remember a man who fought for the issues they believed it, and whose words they could relate to.

“I think Jack was just such a personable guy that, even meeting with him for 20 seconds, gave you the impression that you knew him for an entire lifetime,” said Tim Chu, and NDP member who has worked on the party’s campaigns and met Layton, even though he admits it was for a brief handshake.

“I’ve had conversations with him, he’s such an incredible guy,” said Chu, who still talks about Layton like he’s alive. “He’s somebody that has inspired me quite a bit to get involved with the party, and I will continue to be involved with the party.

That’s why I’m down here today, to remember such a great guy.”

Orange Crush was servedIn the 2011 federal election, Layton led the NDP to its first-ever term as Canada’s official opposition, and was known as someone who would stand up or speak for the Average Joe.

“He was a regular guy, he wasn’t way up on a mountain somewhere,” said Marijka Grimm, an NDP supporter. “He came down, he talked to people, he met your eyes when he talked to you. He didn’t just shake your hand and walk away.

“He looked like the uncle who would sneak you a beer.”

Layton’s memory was celebrated all around B.C. on Wednesday.

“He changed the face of Canadian politics,” said Nathan Cullen, MP of Skeena-Bulkley Valley, to The Northern View. “Jack inspired many people to get involved with politics for the first time and work for change.”

The scene was very similar to last year’s candlelit vigil, held the day of Layton’s passing, at Vancouver Art Gallery.

There were other events held all around Canada on Wednesday night, with the biggest in Toronto, led by Layton’s widow and NDP MP Olivia Chow. There was also a Layton memorial held in Kamloops.

*video by Kolby Solinsky

Jack Layton t-shirt worn by NDP supporter

Just Posted

White Rock RCMP seeking information about Aug. 16 assault

Man in 60s was injured around same time Paul Prestbakmo was stabbed to death

New recovery house rules, increased funding aim to prevent overdose tragedy

Changes ‘speak to issues’ highlighted by death of South Surrey’s Zachary Plett

Police hope to speak with witnesses from fatal 2017 stabbing in Surrey

Wally Rogers was stabbed outside his home near 88th Avenue and 144th Street on July 8, 2017

Surrey RCMP say municipal force approval a ‘challenging time’ for detachment

Province green lit the plan, joint committee for transition to be established

Police watchdog seeking witnesses in officer-involved Surrey shooting

This is the fourth incident within a one-week period that IIO is investigating

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

Expanded support to help B.C. youth from care attend university still falling short

Inadequate support, limited awareness and eligibility restrictions some of the existing challenges

Ethnic media aim to help maintain boost in voting by new Canadians

Statistics Canada says new Canadians made up about one-fifth of the voting population in 2016

Cross-examination begins for B.C. dad accused of killing young daughters

Andrew Berry is charged in the deaths of six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey in 2017

Dog attacked by river otters, Penticton owner says

Marie Fletcher says her dog was pulled underwater by four river otters in the Penticton Channel

BC SPCA overwhelmed with cats, kittens needing homes

Large number of cruelty investigations, plus normal ‘kitten season’ to blame

Memorial to deceased teen stays in place through Labour Day

Hundreds of tributes have been left at the Walnut Grove skate park

Wife charged in husband’s death in Sechelt

Karin Fischer has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of her husband, Max

Most Read