Special to The Sentinel
The family of the worker who died in Richmond on Saturday (Jan. 6) afternoon has identified him as 52-year-old Deepkiran Singh Gill.
While WorkSafe BC and the B.C. Coroner Service are looking into the incident, his relatives gathered at his Cloverdale home the following day. They said Gill had immigrated to Canada from Punjab, India, during the 1980s.
Survived by a wife and a 24-year-old son, Gill was a seasoned employee at Richmond Plywood, where the accident occurred.
His coworkers were also at his home to console his grieving wife and other relatives. Despite heavy rain, visitors kept arriving. Many were shocked after learning about the passing away of an experienced colleague.
One of them showed Gill's lunch bag and said with a choked voice that this was what he left with for work yesterday.
Among those present was Jati Sidhu, the Liberal MP for Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon, who was Gill'smaternal uncle.
Sidhu said Gill was a very helpful person who donated money for a funeral home created by South Asians in Abbotsford in accordance with their traditions.
Labour Minister Harry Bains and Surrey-Green Timbers NDP MLA Rachna Singh, who was earlier associated with the Canadian Union of Public Employees, also visited the family to pay their condolences.
Bains assured the family and friends of Gill that the matter will be looked into by authorities with the objective of enhancing the safety of workplaces anywhere in the province.
Gill's funeral is scheduledfor noon on Saturday (Jan. 13) at Fraser River Crematorium (2061 Riverside Road, Abbotsford), followed by prayers at Khalsa Diwan Society Abbotsford Gurdwara at 2 p.m.