Disasters and Other Events

Lakeview Disaster

On November 9, 1909 a runaway flatcar with a load of heavy timbers destined for the iron foundry at Nanaimo and 24th Ave “rushing cityward with tremendous momentum” smashed into the east-bound BCER Interurban train “Sumas”. The timbers shot off the flat car and demolished the train instantly killing 14 passengers – one later died from their injuries – and seriously injuring 9 others. The brakeman on the flat car tried in vain to put the brakes on and stop the flat car.

There is a plaque commemorating the disaster at the Lakeview Community Garden at Victoria Dr at the SkyTrain right-of-way.

The accident was the worst transit accident in Vancouver’s history. 12 of the victims were buried at Mountain View.

Thorburn, George Old 5-1-1-9
Thirty-four year-old Thorburn was the motorman of the Interurban car Sumas. He lived on Hamilton Street in downtown Vancouver.
Bowes, Thomas IOOF 43-15
Farmer, Thomas Old -3-20-16
Holland, Edward Jones 1-22-11
Lyons, Robert H1 5-3-14-6
Mitchel, Samuel Glidden H1 4-1-4-9
Pochin, Harry Old 5-3-19-3
Slayton, Henry Hathway Mas 30-15
Forty year-old carpenter Slayton lived on Richards Street in Vancouver.
Stevens, William Edward H1 2-1-20-15
Stevens lived on Prior Street near Gore and worked laying watermains for 
the City.
Stevens, James F. H1 2-1-20-16
Tuttle, Thomas H1 5-4-16-4
Tuttle’s 10 month old son died in Jan 1910 and both were disinterred in April 1910. Thomas was born in Newfoundland, his son Robert George was born in Boston. It is assumed that after losing her husband and son within 4 months, his wife moved back east and took the remains with her.
WILKINSON, Archer Samuel OLD/5/03/019/0014

1910 Rogers Pass Disaster

August 12, 2010 relatives from Japan, the Consul General of Japan, representatives from Parks Canada, Canadian Pacific, and Revelstoke gathered at Mountain View to unveil new bronze markers at the graves of the 32 Japanese men who died in the snow slide, and two sentinel lanterns which mark the boundaries of the Canadian Nippon Supply Company’s burial lots, where the men are buried.

March 4, 2010 was the 100th anniversary of the largest avalanche accident in Canada. 58 men died in the accident and 34 men, 32 Japanese and 2 caucasian men are buried at Mountain View.

From the Rogers Pass Visitors Centre publication Snow War:
“The night of March 4, 1910, began like most other nights for the men working in Rogers Pass. The crew was at the summit clearing a big slide that had come down Cheeps Mountain on the west side of the pass and had blocked the tracks. A rotary snow plow had cut a path across the piled snow on the line and men were working in the cut shoveling snow and clearing away trees swept down by the avalanche. The events which followed were to change the course of history in Rogers Pass.

A half hour before midnight, some of the men outside the cut heard a deep rumbling, then timbers cracking. An unexpected avalanche swept down Avalanche Mountain on the side of the pass opposite the first slide. Trapped within their snow-walled tomb, most of the men never even heard the slide approach. 58 died. [34 of the men are buried at Mountain View Cemetery.]

Huge wing plows, rotary plows, snow sheds and an army of men could not keep safe the railway line through Rogers Pass. Between 1885 and 1911 deaths caused by avalanches totalled over 200. Faced with this kind of peril to employees and passengers, crippling costs and steep grades, the C.P.R. [Canadian Pacific Railway] acknowledged defeat and prepared to retreat from the summit of the pass.

If trains could not go safely over the pass then they would run under it through an eight-kilometer tunnel piercing the roots of Mount Macdonald. In 1913 construction started on the longest railway tunnel in Canada. When completed it eliminated 16 kilometres of some of the most hazardous railway line in the world. Operation of the eight-kilometer Connaught Tunnel commenced on December 13, 1916. Rogers Pass was abandoned.”
——
The men buried at Mountain View are listed below:
Last name       First Name     Prefecture      Birth Place

  • Takeda       Yasuharu          Shizuoka       123 MuramatsuFujimi-muraAbe-gun
  • Tsuboi        Genichi             Okayama       2142 Oaza-KamitakadaIwata-muraKibi-gun
  • Omura        Kesakichi         Kagosima       1409 HonjoTarumizu-mura
  • Sakoda       Hikohachi        Kagosima       121 Kunikibara Tarumizu-mura
  • Yamaji        Mannosuke     Kagosima       113 KunukibaruTarumizu-mura Kimotsuki-gun
  • Maeda        Kanjuro            Shizuoka         Sanohmae Numazu-cyo Sunto-gun
  • Ikeda          Naosaku           Shizuoka         118 Muramatsu Fujimim-mura Abe-gun
  • Horiuchi    Heikichi           Shizuoka         1774Shimotaruki Taruki-mura Ogasa-gun
  • Ishiyama   Kinsaku            Shizuoka         160Azakamisaigo Saigo-mura Ogasa-gun
  • Kobayashi Koichi                Shizuoka         83 Kamiuchida Kamiuchi-mura Ogasa-gun
  • Mochizuki Yasujiro            Shizuoka         54 Ejiri Ejiri-mura Ihara-gun
  • Abe              Masatora         Nagano            Beppu Shino-mura Chisagata-gun
  • Hayashida Matsuei            Fukuoka          438 Ko-Nukumoto Honami-muraKaho-gun
  • Imamura    Takefusa          Fukui               12-9 Oaza-ohyabuMinamisaigo-mura kata-gun
  • Otake          Kisaburo          Fukui                1739 Mishima Tsuruga-cyoTsuruga-gun
  • Tanabe       Ginzo                Fukui                17-4 Oaza-sakajiri Santoh-mura Mikata-gun
  • Ueno          Keisaburo         Shiga                3 OhazaShimonogoh Nishikoura-mura Inugami-gun
  • Sasaki        Kitaro                Shiga                 Kaneda Ineeda-mura Echi-gun
  • Tsujimura Sentaro             Shiga                 15 AzarinKameyama-mura Inugami-gun
  • Sasaki        Seiichi               Hiroshima        401 Kuchi-muraAsa-gun
  • Takeda      Tokuichi           Hiroshima        365-1 Kita-mura Takada-gun
  • Hirano      Isamu                Hiroshima         673 Ohaza-tomo Tomo-mura Asa-gun
  • Kanegawa Kenichi             Hiroshima         Aza-KaruiKakogawa-mura Asa-gun
  • Matsumoto Kiyoshi           Hiroshima        Funa-machiFukuyama-machi Fukuyasu-gun
  • Miyake       Kitaro               Okayama           645 Oaza-SojaSojya-cyo Kibi-gun
  • Hirano        Shinzo              Okayama          1891 Oaza-Kamihara Matsubara-
    muraKawakami-gun
  • Tsuboi        Aitaro                Okayama          NakayasukuraYorijima-cyo Asakuchi-gun
  • Mizukawa Fusakichi           Okayama          100 Azaozakihigashitani Kurese-
    mura Kibi-gun
  • Wasa          Otokichi             Yamaguchi       Tsuzu-muraKuga-gun
  • Onodera    Takeshi               Miyagi              91 Aza ChuohOaza-KitagohIshikoshi-muraTome-gun
  • Sato            Kenjiro               Miyagi              59 Oaza-TakizawaYonekawa-muraTome-gun
  • Suzuki        Masayoshi         Miyagi              43 Kaminuma-mura Tome-gun

The graves are located in plots purchased by the Canadian Nippon Supply Company.

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