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Hundreds gather at City Hall to say farewell to Jack Layton

'It will take all of us to carry your torch,' mourners write

Mourners honour NDP Leader Jack Layton at City Hall, Aug 22. Credit: Andrea Houston

Messages written in multicoloured chalk on the ramp overlooking Nathan Phillips Square promise to pick up the “orange crush” movement where beloved NDP Leader Jack Layton left off.

Some of the messages said: “The people say thank you to you Jack.” “You inspired me with your smile and your ‘stache.” “You made politics fun again.”

About 300 people gathered at Toronto City Hall on Aug 22 to honour Layton, who died early that morning following a long battle with cancer. The memorial was organized in mere hours after Canada awakened to the news of his death.

The flags outside Toronto City Hall, Metro Hall and several city civic centres waved at half-mast in Layton’s memory. Inside City Hall, people waited in line to sign the condolence book.

Many mourners hugged each other and cried. “I’m just so sad,” said Andrea Garcia. “It’s a huge loss.”

Layton’s funeral will be held this Saturday, Aug 27, at Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto.

Read Xtra‘s Proud Life on Jack Layton here.