Hon. HUGH GUTHRIE (Minister of Justice):
Mr. Speaker, it becomes my painful duty in the absence of the Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) to announce in this chamber the sudden death of our esteemed colleague, Thomas Herbert Lennox which, I believe, occurred in the city of Toronto at an early hour this morning. The awful suddenness of the demise of our late colleague has cast a feeling of most profound sorrow throughout this chamber. It was but a few days ago that he sat in his place here and also but a few days ago when he was engaged in an important legal case before the Supreme Court of Canada. Little did we think at that time that he was so soon to be removed from this earthly scene. It brings before us very prominently the old admonition that in the midst of life we are in death.
Mr. Lennox had sat in this parliament for a number of years and I think I can say he had endeared himself to members in every corner of the house. His affable, genial disposition was manifest at all times and his friends throughout Ontario and in this chamber were legion. He was a native son of the province of Ontario, having been born sixty-five years ago in the county of Simcoe. He was the product of the public schools of Ontario and of the collegiate institute at Barrie. Afterwards he took his legal course and was called to the bar at Osgoode Hall in the city of Toronto. After having been called to the bar he immediately engaged in practice and from the very start of his career at the bar it may be said that he was wonderfully successful. He soon rose to a very prominent position at the bar; he was made one of His Majesty's counsel
Death of Mr. Lennox
learned in the law; he was elected a bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada, and at the time of his death he was one of the undoubted leaders of the bar of the province of Ontario and one of the really great lawyers of the Dominion of Canada. His death will be sincerely mourned by his many colleagues in the legal profession. The late T. H. Lennox was a man of varied attainment and of many activities. During the war it will be remembered that he was exceedingly active; at that time, he cast aside his profession and his public life, and through his efforts to a very large extent the battalion known as the 208th was raised, he himself became the officer commanding, with the rank of lieutenant-colonel, and took that battalion overseas. He returned to Canada with an excellent military record.
Early in life our late colleague resolved to devote at least some portion of his time to what we might term the public service of the country, though I think it will be recognized on all sides that his chief interest in secular matters was in his own chosen profession of law. He devoted a very large amount of his time to his profession, he was engaged in a great many varied and important cases, and was not permitted to devote as much time to his public life as we would all have liked. As early as the year 1902 he unsuccessfully contested a riding for the legislature of the province of Ontario, but subsequently in the jrear 1905 he was elected for the provincial constituency of North York at a general election, and at four subsequent general elections in the province of Ontario he carried the same riding. He continued as a member of the Ontario legislature until he was first returned to the House of Commons as representative for the riding of North York in the general election of 1925, again in the year 1926 he was elected for that riding, and also in the year 1930 at the last general election.
He has had an eminently successful career both in the legislature of Ontario and in the parliament of Canada, and had he been able to devote more time to his parliamentary duties he would certainly have risen to a very high place in the public life of Canada. He was a man whom everyone liked, everyone regarded as a friend. While he was a hard fighter when a contest was on, he was a man who carried no bitterness, no acrimonious feelings when the contest was over. I believe one can say that all who knew him were his friends; few, if any, were his enemies. The suddenness of his taking off has produced a tremendous impression in this house. We all mourn him most sincerely. All we can do now is to lament his loss and express our
feelings of regret and sympathy to those members of his family and relatives who survive.
It is to be noted that the deceased himself received some hard knocks during his lifetime. Only a few months ago his only son was suddenly killed in an automobile accident in the city of Toronto. Indeed, many of his intimate friends consider that Thomas Herbert Lennox never really got over the shock caused by his son's death.
He is gone from us, and all we can do is to respect his memory and lament his early death.