Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to Roger Smith, who is retiring from CTV after a distinguished career as a respected and much liked journalist. He first joined the National Press Gallery in 1977, when you were not even born, Mr. Speaker, and I was nine years old.
Roger went on to have an extensive career in foreign capitals. From his front-row seat, he interpreted complex and fast-moving world events in a way that Canadians trusted and very much admired.
His recent assignment was to cover federal politics from Ottawa. He travelled with party leaders in six different national elections and easily made friends in all political parties. His warm sense of humour made him fun to travel with.
I met Roger when I was a young assistant in Mr. Chrétien's office 15 years ago, and I have considered him a friend ever since.
We wish Roger and his wife Denise Chong and their family well as Roger says goodbye to the National Press Gallery, where he has left a distinguished record and mark that will be remembered for a long time.