Hearing that NDP leader Jack Layton passed away this morning has struck me with a level of unexplainable sadness.
I first met Jack when he stepped forward to run for leader of the national New Democratic Party. I was 23 years-old, and inspired by his energy, positive message, his creative thinking and get-to-it attitude. Jack didn’t see obstacles, only opportunities. Needless to say, I jumped on his campaign for Leader.
Since then, Jack continually inspired me. When visiting him in Toronto, he gave me the neighbourhood tour and hosted me and fellow young New Democrats at his house for a BBQ. It was then that I told Jack I was thinking of running for City Council in Nelson. He beamed and gave me the best advice I have ever received on how to win with integrity.
In the last election, Canada saw Jack’s positive energy spread across the country. His vibrant smile despite health challenges showed us his deep commitment to our country. With the belief in equality, fairness and justice, Jack worked tirelessly for the benefit of each and every person. Canada is a better place because of him.
It is with deep sorrow that I send my condolences to his wife Olivia Chow, his son Mike and daughter Sarah, his entire family, and friends. Thank you for sharing Jack with us.- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -