Retired reverend Brent Hawks remembers Toronto’s Gay Village of the 1970s. Then it occupied a small stretch of Yonge Street between College and Wellesley, anchored on either end by two bars — the St. Charles Tavern at the south end and the Parkside Tavern at the north. They were the “dark and dirty” places where a serial killer might, and did, find his victims.
The CBC’s fifth estate investigated a recent string of disappearances in Toronto’s gay community linked to Bruce McAurthur. Evidence found at the homes where the 65-year-old worked as a gardener connected him to the missing men and now police are looking back to see if those unsolved cases from the 70s are linked to the same killer.
As a young man in his 20s, McAurthur held a job at the Eaton Centre warehouse that once stood on the site of the Church of the Holy Trinity. It was there that Hawks was interviewed and photographed.