A Bus Full of Heros – Rest In Peace Tim McLean
There seems to be a lot of criticism leveled against the passengers of the Greybound bus traveling en route from Brandon, Manitoba to Winnipeg last Wednesday night during which a man was brutally murdered and his body defiled. The criticism seems to be that they did not do enough; did not try hard enough to stop Li. I cannot imagine in my wildest dreams, or perhaps nightmares, how I would have reacted had I been one of the passengers. But I do know one thing: Garnet Caton, the bus driver, and the truck driver who stopped to help them, are heroes. Caton, it seems, acted according to what his instinct dictated in the moment. He and likely several others did what they could only do as a reaction – get off the bus and ensure the safety of all the remaining passengers, including themselves. Then once off the bus, and when the truck driver stopped to help them, a regrouping and reassessment seemed to have been done. Caton, the bus driver, and the truck driver reboarded the bus. By this time, Li was already in the process of decapitating the victim. What else could Caton’s party then do? It was too late for Tim, a horror beyond tragic. The three had to exit and ensure the safety of everyone else, until the RCMP arrived, by securing the door.
There is a tendency to compare this situation with other events where a more positive result may have occured, but even as one blogger says,
“…the way that people will behave in these situations is, well, situational. The choices that are possible depend on where you are and what is happening. There’s no overall story of civilization to be told here. In both cases, the victims and witnesses did the best they could in the circumstances in which they found themselves. They all acted remarkably bravely; but the differences in the situations permitted them a different set of split-second decisions. It’s really, I think, as simple as that.”
It would not surprise me if Caton is consumed with guilt that he could have done more and that his thoughts are filled right now with “What ifs” and “If onlys”. The circumstances and development of this situation, dictated the ethics assocated with this one: Do what can be done to ensure the safety of the rest.
There is not one of us, who, when imagining this event, can say for sure what we would have done in any of those passengers’ places.
Over the coming weeks, Caton may be inclined to share more of what he saw, heard, and did – if he can.