Mr. Speaker, this is the first time that I rise from my seat to speak as the servant of the population of Ottawa—Orléans.
Ten days ago, during the parliamentary recess, the Hon. Lloyd Francis, who was Speaker in 1984, succumbed to cancer at the age of 86.
In our thoughts, let us commemorate the service to Canada of a man from that remarkable generation who defended this country during Word War II and who then continued with public service and public life in post-war Canada. He is among the brave men and women who built today's Canada.
Lloyd Francis worked on RADAR and trained navigators during his air force days, a vital building block in Canada's effort against Nazi tyranny. He then continued to build his city and his country.
Few know that Dr. Francis was an economist at the Department of National Health and Welfare and that he contributed to the design of the Canada pension plan.
Twenty years before my own election to city council, he was already serving the City of Ottawa as an alderman, commissioner and deputy mayor.
As a candidate for this House, he had a perfect record. He won the 26th, 28th, 30th and 32nd general elections and he lost the odd numbered elections in between. In this House he rose to the highest office, that of Speaker.
However, it was as Deputy Speaker that he truly made his mark. Along with the late Speaker Jeanne Sauvé, he focussed his efforts on reforming the administration of this House so as to make it more efficient and helpful.
I knew Lloyd Francis. Lloyd Francis was a friend of mine. I did not serve in the same functions at the same time but we worked together. Together we fought certain parochial interests to relocate out of Ottawa a huge number of federal employees from the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources. It worked and his letter of thanks hangs on my wall.
Lloyd left Parliament in 1984 and yet for all of us he remains part of the House that we know today. His reforms live on.
His unfaltering commitment to the population of Carleton and Ottawa-West as well as to his colleagues in Parliament can serve as an example to us and to those who will come after us.
Today we extend our sympathy to my friends, Paul, Donald and Elaine Francis, and to their children and grandchildren. I also want to remember his late wife, Margery, who walked with me to cast my first vote in 1968. I offer my sincere sympathies and those of Canada's government to his widow, Mary.
Above all, we offer our thanks and the thanks of a grateful country. The Hon. Lloyd Francis set an example of public service to Parliament and to Canada.