There are three plaques about this disaster.
All can be seen on this page.
Photos by Alan L Brown - Posted May, 2005
Plaque coordinates: 43.649165 -79.49324
On October 15, 1954, Hurricane Hazel hit southern Ontario with 110 km/h winds and over 200 mm of rain. Many rivers, including the Humber, Don and Rouge overflowed flooding communities in much of southern Ontario. The storm killed 81 people, left 1868 families homeless, and caused extensive property damage. International and local donations to a flood relief fund assisted victims, and all three levels of government shared the expenses of paying for property damage and removing houses located in floodplains. Hurricane Hazel's legacy was the development of a sophisticated weather warning system for the province, measures to conserve the watersheds of major rivers, and a continually evolving system of flood warning and control.
Photos by Alan L Brown - Posted September, 2006
Plaque coordinates: 43.586631 -79.543633
On October 16, 1954, Metropolitan Toronto experienced wide-spread devastation and extensive loss of life as a result of Hurricane Hazel. Many people acted very bravely in their attempts to help and rescue their fellow citizens. This plaque is to commemorate those that lost their lives and those that displayed such acts of courage and heroism in this area.
Photos by Alan L Brown - Posted July, 2007
Plaque coordinates: 43.657991 -79.500160
In proud memory of these men of the Kingsway-Lambton Volunteer Fire Department: Clarence (Tiny) Collins, Frank Mercer, Roy Oliver, David Palmateer, Angus Small. They lost their lives in the swollen Humber River while on rescue work during Hurricane Hazel, 16th October 1954. Faithful unto death.
Posted May 3, 2013
I need more information on a Jerry Drysdale who lost his life in the hurricane. Please send me an email if you know anything at all. There will be a reward. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted January 17, 2013
In 1989 I led a team of 8 to replace the original bridge, because it had suffered excessive rust. My father was involved in construction of the six original bridges. This bridge in the photographs is not the original one. See http://intergon.net/handson.
Capt Lionel Boxer, late of 2FER
Posted August 8, 2012
I was 9 years old, living in North York when Hurricane Hazel struck. The winds were severe and whipped the tall trees surrounding my home. We had a large picture window in the living room which gave a full view of the storm. My mother, grandfather, dad and I rushed to the window to see the wind effects and hard pounding rain which was coming down so fast it looked like dense fog. My mother concerned at the strength of the storm cautioned us to stay away from the window. The next morning, huge limbs from many of the surrounding trees could be seen tossed onto the roads and neighboring lawns. It was then that we learned of the full extent of the devastation caused by the storm in my neighbourhood and surrounding area.
Only about two miles away in Weston, the Humber River had exploded over its banks flooding many homes, breaking bridges, heaving roads and causing loss of life. Homes were moved from their foundations, tossed about and broken up on the banks of the river along with possessions that floated continuously down the river. Large pieces of cement, most likely from the roads, driveways, sidewalks and bridges were deposited and stacked in new locations as if they were light bricks. Sadly many people drowned trying to save themselves and others. It took a long time for the area to be cleaned up and for families to be relocated to begin their lives over.
According to my understanding, it was not long after Hurricane Hazel passed, that new laws were enacted forbidding the development of homes in the flood plains along the Humber River. What is so unbelievable today is that there is now development along some of the flood plains. History does repeat itself in some form or other; often, in ways we cannot not imagine. Why is and has such development taken place? This question needs to be answered.
I will not forget the ravaging disaster that took place that day.
Posted July 31, 2012
My Dad's father was killed in Hurricane Hazel. His name was Daniel Garfield Richmond. My Dad was only 8 years old and doesn't know much about his Dad. If there is anyone out there with information about the details of how he died I would appreciate it.
Posted October 23, 2011
I remember Hurricane Hazel. I was 12yrs. old and was very upset. Our dog had just given birth to puppies and she was in the barn. ( This was on my farm in Pickering). I went down and sat with the puppies for a while wishing the wind and rain would go away. I lost my little dog in the storm. She was electricuted. She was part Doberman and part Collie. Her name was Maggie. So sad.
Sandy K. Toronto
Posted August 29, 2011
I was 8 years old living in East York with my family when Hazel Hit. I remember a weatherman Percy Salztman on the CBC warning that Hazel was going to hit Toronto. I remember a CBC reporter on Saturday crying as he told the story of the 5 volunteer firemen who died in the Humber trying to save lives when their fire truck was swept away. I remember the rain, the rain was worse than the worst thunder storm I have ever been in ebfore or since. I lived on Queensdale Avenue and the folloing week my friends and I sold our toys to help with the relief fund.
Ken Imison, Scarborough Ontario
Posted August 29, 2011
I was 7 yrs. old, in NC, but can remember is like it was yesterday. We were afraid, my Mom took the entire family to my uncles house, which was not a good idea, as his house sustained more damage than ours. We only lost part of the front porch and a tree- Irene didn't scare me at all, just felt we would all be safe and we were
Posted August 27, 2011
I was 11 yrs old and to this day I hate the wind...I could remember being with my Mother over my Aunts house and laying on the floor with my fingers in my ears and crying I was very scared...Now with Irene on It's way I feel like a child all over again....It's soooo scary...The next day all the trees were down and I still went to CCD at church...I pray that everyone is safe and no lives are lost and we don't have much damage..August 27th...2011 New Jersey
Posted August 15, 2011
I was 2 when Hazel hit and I grew up hearing stories of the devastation and loss of lives. The storm changed the life of my cousin Nancy Jean "Thorpe" Johnston (Orphan of the Storm)a survivor of the storm. She lost her parents, brother and grandmother in the storm.
Posted February 5, 2011
do you have information regarding people who lost their lives in woodbridge ont. during the hurricane? Specifically a Jerry Drysdale who I know lost his life but can find nothing else regarding him. If you can help it would e greatly appreciated. email@example.com Thanks.
Posted October 21, 2010
I was only a year and a half old at that time, but my mother frequently told me stories about what had happened. She said it rained steadily and hard for several days, and that she had never seen anything like it. Thank goodness there has been NOTHING quite like Hazel in the years since.
Posted October 17, 2010
I was out and about in the City the day Hurricane Hazel struck. I can recall waiting on a corner for a streetcar amidst high winds and a drenching downpour. It was only the next day I realized what a tragic event it had been. For me personally the most marked effect of the storm was the complete flooding of the Holland Marsh vegetable growing area near Newmarket, which was in a dyked bowl of hills, and the dykes gave way. I managed to make it to a friend's house in the Marsh hoping to assist in some way, but it was just water water everywhere. It took several days to repair the dykes and pump out most of the water. No loss of life there, but extremely traumatic for the market gardeners nevertheless. Most were recent immigrants and did not have insurance. I doubt if any of the Governments stepped forward.
F James Smith, Puslinch ON
Posted September 14, 2008
Hazel came to Ontario 2 years before I was born, but I remember all the stories I heard about it. Nobody could forget the wrath of Hazel.
Note: If you wish to ask me a question, please use the email link in the menu.
Note: Comments are moderated. Yours will appear on this page within 24 hours
(usually much sooner).
Note: As soon as the comment is posted, a link to it will appear on the home page in the section "Here are the 10 latest plaque pages with a new comment added by a visitor to this site."