By Siva Sivapragasam
Toronto’s former Mayor Rob Ford who battled many odds during his political career but could not fight his cancer passed away this morning.
Ford was forty-six at the time of his death and was suffering from a rare and aggressive cancer known as liposarcoma.
Rob Ford was better known as a “people’s politician” and built a name as a person accessible by anyone and would reach out to any of his constituents when they needed help.
He was elected mayor by a landslide victory in 2010 and became a hero among the city folk. He helped to wipe out a controversial vehicle-tax, privatized garbage collection and successfully convinced the council to abandon a light-rail transit plan in favour of an underground railway system for Scarborough.
Ford is remembered for his unique brand of politics and he tirelessly cultivated what was termed as a “Ford Brand”. Ford also showed his interests in other ways too. He showed his dedication to the community by hosting a free Ford Fest barbeque event annually and by coaching a local high school football team.
Ford’s term of office as Mayor of Toronto ended when a scandal broke out in 2013 where he was caught in video allegedly smoking crack cocaine. Ford will be long remembered as a fighter who took “no” for an answer and bravely fought his opponents, the dreadful disease and never admitting defeat.
Rob Ford once told viewers on a you-tube program “I am not an international celebrity,”. “I’m an average hard-working guy that goes to work every day, comes home to their family, takes my kids out, and supports my wife and family.”