VIA Rail salutes the life and legacy of Jim Flaherty

MONTREAL, April 10, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - VIA Rail Canada is saddened by the sudden passing of the Honorable James Michael Flaherty, P.C., M.P. and former Minister of Finance in the Government of Canada. His wife and family are in our thoughts. 

Mr. Flaherty was a frequent user of VIA Rail travelling between his Whitby-Oshawa constituency and the National Capital. He was a staunch supporter of passenger trains. Mr. Flaherty was instrumental in securing the largest capital investment in VIA Rail since its creation in 1977. Through the Economic Action Plan, VIA Rail improved its fleet, infrastructure, stations and information technology; it reduced its environmental footprint and, it enhanced the safety of train travel across Canada. These funds initiated the long-delayed modernization of Canada's passenger rail network. 

"Minister Flaherty was an influential and dedicated public servant, praised around the globe for his steady leadership during turbulent economic times. Here at home, his support and passion for VIA Rail was well known, and will long be remembered," stated Paul G. Smith, Chairman of the Board of VIA Rail Canada.

About VIA Rail Canada
As Canada's national rail passenger service, VIA Rail Canada's mandate is to provide safe, efficient and economical travel, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional and transcontinental trains linking 450 communities across its 12,500 km network. Recipient of the Railway Association of Canada's Safety Award in 2012 for the 11th time in 12 years, and of Baxter Travel Media's 2013 Agent's Choice Award (voted on by Canadian travel agents), VIA Rail safely transports nearly four million passengers annually. Since 2007, the Government of Canada has invested more than a billion dollars in VIA Rail. Follow the progress of our transformation at viarail.ca/transformingvia.

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SOURCE VIA Rail Canada Inc.

For further information: Mylène Bélanger, Senior Advisor, Media Relations, VIA Rail Canada, 1 877 393-8787, mylene_belanger@viarail.ca | media@viarail.ca