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Olympic Memories: Tim Chaput

Olympic Memories: Tim Chaput

asktranslink-memoriesFor the next three installments in our Olympic Memories series we revisit the 2010 Winter Olympic Games by asking CMBC transit operators about their experiences moving the world four years ago! Written by Jennifer Siddon, Senior Communications Advisor for Coast Mountain Bus Company.

Tim Chaput
Tim Chaput

Tim has been a transit operator for nearly 20 years. He’s part of what’s called “the spareboard,” which means that instead of having a permanent route to drive, he is available for shifts on a callout or on-call basis. During the 2010 Winter Olympics, that meant he drove the 022 Knight/MacDonald, and routes to and from UBC and downtown Vancouver.

Lasting impressions

When asked about his overall impression of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, Tim said, “People were really blown away by Vancouver. I am really proud of our city and the job we did [getting spectators where they needed to go].”

Favourite memory

Tim said that if he had to choose just one favourite memory of the Games, it would be everything that happened during Opening Day (February 12, 2010).

Torch relay

There were thousands of people lined up along the streets of downtown Vancouver cheering him on! OK, not really. They were lined up to catch a glimpse of the torch relay. But there was so much excitement in the city that it felt amazing to be right at the centre of it.

(Caption for photo: With traffic stopped for the torch Tim had an opportunity to take this picture at Pender & Carrall
With traffic stopped for the torch Tim had an
opportunity to take this picture at Pender & Carrall

Experience of a lifetime

Tim’s bus became a makeshift stage for Musqueam band musicians who dazzled their international audience.

It was Tim’s last trip of the day. He was on the 022 Knight/MacDonald route, starting at the Dunbar Loop.  About 30 members of the Musqueam band, dressed in traditional clothing, and some carrying instruments, boarded the bus to head downtown.

Along the way, Tim picked up visitors from Ottawa, Chicago, Hawaii, Washington DC, and London, England. All were thrilled to be visiting Vancouver for the games and there was a lot of excited chatter on the packed bus. When the bus reached the Burrard Street Bridge, Tim asked the musicians to play. They did.

Tim's pin
Tim’s pin

It was magical. So magical that passengers were disappointed to have to leave the bus. When the band members reached their destination, one of the band members came to the front door of the bus, and without saying a word, handed Tim a pin. By the time Tim had called it a day, he felt like he was walking two feet off the ground.

Do you have some fond 2010 Winter Olympic memories? Share them with us in the comments section and make sure to enter our contest!