A Sri Lankan Canadian was among the 10 victims who passed away due to the van attack on pedestrians that took place in North Toronto on 23rd April 2018 at 1.30 p.m., Eastern Time.
The victim has been identified as 45 year old Beatrice Renuka Amarasinghe, mother of a seven year old boy. Renuka was from Horana and had initially worked in Kuwait and later migrated to Canada and being employed in Canada for the past 17 years, she had close association with the affairs of the Toronto Buddhist Temple.
Her sister, Pushpakanthie Amarasinghe said Renuka had recently visited Sri Lanka and hoped to get dual citizenship as well. She said her sister had met with this accident when she was on her way to work after dropping her son to school.
Chief monk Ahangama Rathanasiri Thero said Renuka worked at school cafeterias and attended the temple frequently, sometimes helping arrange religious ceremonies. Friend Thilina Pelendage said that she was known for her humorous nature and for never forgetting people’s birthdays. Pelendage says that she had no other relatives in Toronto and that another family in Toronto’s Sri Lankan community with whom she once lived plans to care for her son.
Though it is yet to be officially confirmed by Canadian authorities, the Sri Lankan community is aware the death of Ms. Amarasinghe. At a meeting held last evening, at the Toronto Maha Vihara under the patronage of Ven. Ahangama Rathanasiri Thero, the Chief Incumbent of the Vihara, which was attended by Consul General of Sri Lanka in Toronto and Consulate officials, it was decided that funeral arrangements will be organized, with assistance of the Sri Lankan community once the official formalities are completed.
The Lotus Youth Council, together with the Ryerson University Sri Lankan Student Alliance, the University of Toronto Scarborough Sri Lankan Student Association, and Toronto Mahavihara,created a go fund me page to raise funds for 7 year old Diyon, Renuka’s son. So far over $100,000 have been raised. If you wish to help you can visit