The sentencing hearing for the semi-trailer driver in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash was held last week.
A total of 90 statements were ready by those affected by the bus crash, including family and friends of the victims. They told the semi-trailer unit driver, Jaskirat Singh Sidhu, how the collision has changed their lives.
Some of them expressed forgiveness to Sidhu.
Among the statements to gain national attention was from former Estevan resident Christina Haugan, the widow of Darcy Haugan, who was the team’s head coach and general manager when the collision occurred. She pointed out that the bus crash has had an impact on every aspect of her family’s lives.
“I choose the word collision intentionally, as I believe an accident to be something that was circumstances beyond our control and as such not preventable,” said Haugan.
But the bus crash was preventable. Had Sidhu stopped or slowed down before reaching the intersection, then she said so many days would be different today, including those of Sidhu and his family.
“I have two children,” she said. “Your actions on April 6 took their father. It took my husband. It took our main wage earner. Everything about our lives changed in that one instant you made the decision to ignore a stop sign.”
They now struggle every day to get out of bed and go about their day. Her two boys, Carson and Jackson, lost their strong male influence who offered the guidance of a father in school and sports.
“The hole their dad’s death leaves in their lives is something that will never ever be filled with anything and will never completely heal,” she said.
She also pointed out that her husband will never see his boys graduate, cheer them and support them at another hockey game, or ever see them get married or hold them.
And the crash on April 6 took her husband.
“Your actions, while I believe to not be intentional, were still incredibly negligent and irresponsible while you held a weapon in your hands in the form of a steering wheel,” she said.
But Christina Haugan pointed out that her husband was a man of faith, a faith that she also has. And so while Sidhu’s actions have had consequences on the family, she has forgiven him.
“There are days while the unjustness and sadness and anger are definitely still there, but I have been forgiven for things when I didn’t deserve it, and so I will do the same,” she said.
She also encouraged him to learn what he can about the victims, because there were so many incredible people on the bus.
Sentencing is scheduled to happen March 22. The Crown is seeking a 10-year prison sentence.