Community chips in to help fix Windsor accessible bus damaged by vandals

·2 min read
Thanks to donations from community members, the Windsor Senior Citizen Bus Society's Poppy Bus should be back on the road again in a couple of weeks. (Windsor Senior Citizen Bus Society - image credit)
Thanks to donations from community members, the Windsor Senior Citizen Bus Society's Poppy Bus should be back on the road again in a couple of weeks. (Windsor Senior Citizen Bus Society - image credit)

A Windsor, N.S., charity will soon be able to offer rides in its Poppy Bus to seniors and people with disabilities after someone made off with the vehicle's catalytic converter last weekend.

The Windsor Senior Citizen Bus Society said Friday it's received $6,000 in donations from a local business and an organization to help repair the bus, which was vandalized last weekend.

Leslie Porter, society chair, said she is grateful for the donations but saddened they were needed in the first place.

"It affects the community," she said. "All that money that, you know, is going towards this cause could have went to another cause that may possibly have needed the money, as well."

Porter says she's very grateful for the donations.
Porter says she's very grateful for the donations.(Paul Palmeter/CBC)

The bus, which is decorated with large red poppies in honour of Canada's veterans, was parked at the XL Truck and Equipment Services lot in the Windsor Industrial Park when the theft occurred.

There have been a number of catalytic converter thefts in the area in recent weeks.

The new catalytic converter for the Poppy Bus. Catalytic converters are part of the exhaust system of vehicles and contain rhodium, platinum and palladium — all valuable metals.
The new catalytic converter for the Poppy Bus. Catalytic converters are part of the exhaust system of vehicles and contain rhodium, platinum and palladium — all valuable metals. (Submitted by Leslie Porter)

Porter estimated the bus repairs at $10,000 — the same as the group's average fundraising total for the year. Even with insurance coverage, she feared the deductible would eat up all of the group's available funds.

Donors come forward

In the last couple of days, the society has received two offers of financial help.

Porter said Jonathan and Emelie DeMont of the DeMont Family Funeral Home and Cremation Service in Windsor donated $1,000 toward the repair.

That was followed by a $5,000 donation from the Windsor Rotary Club — $4,000 of which is to cover the insurance deductible and $1,000 to increase security around the bus storage area.

Porter said the catalytic converter has already arrived at the repair shop, but other parts that were damaged during the theft are still on order.

She estimated the repairs should be completed in a week or two, and the bus will, once again, be able to provide service to people across the province as the weather warms up.

MORE TOP STORIES