Portage View Public School accepting gift card donations for family of student killed by train in Springwater

COVID rules still apply at drop off

A Barrie public school is taking donations to help out the family of one of its students, a young boy struck and killed by a train over the weekend.

Principal Rob Prouty of Portage View Public School says gift cards are the best way to support the family of this child. “Sometimes people drop off food. If everybody brings food today, it spoils or you don’t have that much room in your fridge or the freezer,” Principal Prouty told Barrie 360. “The gift certificates are things that last a lot longer.”

The 13-year-old boy was struck by a train while walking his dog in the area of Baldwick Lane and Highway 90 in Utopia around 9 a.m. Sunday. Prouty says the loss of a student has hit the school hard, especially due to the pandemic. “Kids want to hug each other. And they can’t,” said Prouty. “That’s what they need, they need to be held and be hugged. In the past, the trauma team would come in, kids might go to a room, but they might go with a few people. Now, you can only have one person. And that’s not really what they’re looking for.”


Members of the public who wish to drop off gift cards can do so at Portage View Public School at 124 Letitia Street weekdays between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., while Prouty says folks can call ahead to the school at (705) 728-1302 if they wish to arrange a drop-off in advance. All regular COVID-related health and safety measures will apply at the point of drop-off.

The investigation into the young boy’s death continues, and the Huronia West OPP continues to ask that witnesses contact police at 1-888-310-1122.