A Toronto paramedic and his partner have been identified as the two people killed after a vehicle collided with a group of motorcyclists in Haliburton County over the weekend.
Friends and family identified George Eliadis and Shari Williams as the two killed in a collision on Highway 118 near Haliburton on Saturday evening.
The fatal crash happened at around 5 p.m. Saturday when an eastbound vehicle crossed the centre line of the highway and collided with four motorcyclists who were travelling in a group of seven.
Eliadis, who was a deputy commander and 27-year veteran with Toronto Paramedic Services, and Williams were both killed in the crash.
Two others, whose identities have not been made public, sustained life-threatening injuries.
Eliadis was remembered Monday morning as a “highly respected” member of Toronto Paramedics Services.
“There have been a lot of hugs and tears this morning, I have to say,” TPSA spokesperson Kim McKinnon told reporters.
“When we hear of something like this happening, it’s just like any family, you grieve that family member in the way you need to grieve – everyone does that differently. There’s been a lot of hugs, a lot of tears, and a lot of disbelief this morning in the office. It’s pretty hard actually for all of us to talk about it at this point.”
McKinnon said that over the years Eliadis was considered a “leader” in emergency planning for major Toronto events like the Pan Am Games and Pride.
“In his 27 years he’s developed a profound group of people who highly miss him and are quite shocked by what has transpired,” she said.
“Once we know all the details I’m sure that the family will be speaking to us about what is planned and we need to respect the families wishes.”
In a statement sent out Monday, Mayor John Tory said his thoughts are with the friends and families of the victims.
"George and his partner Shari Williams passed away suddenly in a motor vehicle accident over the weekend. George proudly served for 27 years with the City’s paramedic services where he helped Toronto residents during emergencies. I know his colleagues are deeply shaken and saddened by their deaths," Tory's written statement read.
It is not clear what caused the vehicle to cross the centre line and police have not said if charges will be laid in the deadly crash.
The highway was shut down for several hours Saturday night for the investigation but has since reopened.