Heron Road Bridge Collapse

On this date in 1966, 55 years ago Ottawa’s most deadly construction accident occurred. The Heron Road Bridge, properly the Heron Road Workers Memorial Bridge, under construction collapsed owing to inadequate bracing.

Leonard Baird, 55, of 1203 Meadowlands Drive, came to Ottawa a year previous from Toronto and was a resident engineer at the project. The Bairds had no children.

Clarence Beattie, 31, of Cornwall, was the father of five children aged 3 to 9. A foreman. he had worked on the bridge since the start of construction.

Jean Paul Guerin, 35, of Hawkesbury, had recently started working on the bridge. He had six children, aged one to 11.

Omar Lamadeleine, 51, of Embrun, had 12 children, one of whom, a daughter, was to marry the following Saturday. He had been in construction work most of his life. He is interred at Saint Jacques Roman Catholic Cemetery in Embrun.

Edmund Newton, 50, of Almonte. was a part-time farmer and experienced high-rigger. A labourer, he had six children.

Dominic Romano, 36, worked in construction after coming to Canada in 1958. He had two children, aged nine months and two years. His body was returned to Italy.

Raymond Tremblay, 22. a laborer, came to Ottawa two months previous from Jonquierc, Que. and lived in Orleans. He planned to be married in the fall.

Joao Vicgas, 32, of 79 Sweetland Ave., was a Portuguese immigrant whose wife was in Portugal. His body was returned to Portugal.

If you like to know more there’s a recent article by James Powell for the Historical Society of Ottawa.

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