June 19, 1950 (21st Parliament, 2nd Session)


George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. George A. Drew (Leader of the Opposition):

Mr. Speaker, I think it is a fitting tribute to our late friend John R. MacNicol that the Prime Minister (Mr. St.
Laurent) should have varied the ordinary custom to indicate the regret felt in every part of the house, as in every part of Canada, at the passing of a truly great Canadian.
In many ways John R. MacNicol was a unique figure. He was extremely loyal to the party in which he believed and of which he was a member; he had served that party in its highest offices, but in his untiring efforts to advance the best interests of this country he continued to make recommendations for the development of our resources, the conservation of our soil, and so on, only in the hope that the dominion government, the provincial governments or the municipal governments concerned, without regard to political point of view, might carry out the plans in which he believed.
As the Prime Minister has said, of those members who knew him over the years each one was a friend. Mr. MacNicol was untiring in his efforts to encourage recognition of the possibilities of increasing the productive capacity of our country, by reclamation, by conservation, by irrigation in western Canada, by power development in the maritime provinces, and generally by the development of our great resources.
Mr. MacNicol was always proud of Toronto. He never failed to express his pride in what Toronto was to him, and what he believed it would be in the years ahead. But he was equally anxious at all times to serve every part of this country. As has already been stated, between sessions he visited every part of Canada in an effort to encourage the furthering of those plans in which he believed. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him, and by Canadians everywhere who were encouraged by his bright vision of the future. While certainly not a young man at the time of his passing, that vision and the prospects ahead had never been dimmed; his eyes were always on that bright horizon.

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