As emergency crews continue to sift through the remnants of this week’s explosion that happened on Merivale Road, the deceased victim of the incident has been identified by family.
While police are not releasing names, the family of the deceased has confirmed Rick Bastien as the man who died in the explosion that happened at 1995 Merivale Road on the afternoon of Thursday, January 13.
“Sadly, I found out after work that my father Rick Bastien lost his life in this horrible tragedy in Ottawa, along with several others I worked with for a few years,” Josh Bastien, son of the deceased, wrote publicly on his Facebook page. “As I sit here and think of all the things he said to me, all the things we did I have so much regret there wasn’t more.”
Josh confirmed the news in the early morning of Friday, January 14.
“So I tell you all this right now… Don’t waste time away,” he wrote. “Our time dancing on this Earth is just a short while.”
He added, “Right now I am overwhelmed with emotions, ones I never felt before.”
According to Rick’s Facebook page, Rick was a welder, fabricator and mechanic at Eastway Tank & Meter Ltd., where the fire took place.
Rick is from Guelph but was living in Luskville, Que.
Hundreds of messages of condolences were shared to Josh’s post, conveying shock and sadness and offering support.
At about 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, emergency services received calls of an explosion at Eastway Tank & Meter Ltd. in the city’s west end.
A third alarm fire was declared upon arrival by Ottawa Fire Services (OFS).
Three people were sent to hospital, two of which were in serious condition and one in stable condition.
Five people remain missing.
In a statement issued to CityNews Ottawa on Friday, owner of the company Neil Greene, said:
"It is with great sadness that we learned that one of our colleagues perished as a result of the tragic explosion, with five remaining missing and one in hospital. My heart goes out to their families, loved ones and to all of our employees who are reeling from this deep loss.”
The cause of the fire and explosion remains under investigation.