Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to the Hon. Diane Whalen, a former colleague in the legislature of Newfoundland and Labrador, who passed away on October 3 after a courageous battle with cancer. She is being laid to rest today.
As colleagues in the provincial legislature, I saw Diane work diligently as a member of the House of Assembly and a cabinet minister. She was a woman of strength, tremendous integrity and an individual who garnered the respect of everyone for her work ethic. Although we served on opposite sides of the house, we shared the same objective of wanting to make a difference and there was a mutual respect for how we achieved that goal.
Whether as mayor of Paradise, MHA for Conception Bay East--Bell Island, or as a minister in three government departments, Diane's priority was always to do her best for those she represented and for our province.
All in Newfoundland and Labrador who were fortunate enough to work with Diane can attest to the positive attitude she brought to every task. Even through her battle with cancer, she continued to work when she could, determined to fulfill her responsibilities.
I ask all members of the House to join me in passing along our sincere condolences to Diane's family and friends as we salute this remarkable woman.