Hon. Don Mazankowski (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance):
Madam Speaker, I am sorry to prolong the tributes, but as a member of the class of '681 wanted to join with the member for Algoma and my good friend from Papineau-Saint-Michel to pay tribute to the distinguished class of 1968, those who survived and those who went on to do other things.
In looking over the occupations of the 96 members who came to the House of Commons on June 25, 1968 we can see that they covered a wide cross-section of Canadian society. There were railroaders-and I mean real true railroaders-union leaders, mayors, businessmen, farmers, fishermen, lawyers, professors, doctors, stock brokers, administrators, the odd automobile dealer and people from the professions. They really brought quite a broad perspective of views and opinions with them to the House of Commons and obviously brought their views and concerns which reflected the regions from which they came.
There were a number of firsts that were achieved by the class of '68. Three stand out in my mind. Lincoln Alexander, who later went on to become the Lieutenant-Governor of the province of Ontario, was the first black person elected to the Parliament of Canada. That was really quite a thrill, certainly for him and particularly for us because he was a member of our party.
Len Marchand, who is now firmly entrenched in the other place and has been a great member of Parliament, a great public servant and now a tremendous senator, was the first Indian to ever be elected to the House of Commons.
The hon. member for Yorkton-Melville, and I have to say this because he would be too modest to say it in his
remarks, at the time he was elected was the youngest member to have ever entered the House of Commons. I think he had to quit school and come down here to take on the job.
There was a lot of attention with respect to the variety of members who came here in 1968, but there was clearly a lot of focus on these three members.
I had a chance to go through a number of the people who comprised the class of '68. It is really interesting and noteworthy to consider where they are and what they are doing today. I have already mentioned Lincoln Alexander, who went on to become the Lieutenant-Governor. The member for Oshawa, the Hon. Ed Broadbent, went on to become the leader of the New Democratic Party.
We had people like Judd Buchanan, who is pursuing a distinguished business career; Walter Carter from Newfoundland, who is now in the Newfoundland legislature; Louis Comeau, who I believe is the CEO for Nova Scotia Power; Eymard Corbin, who is in the Senate; Bud Cullen, who went on to become a minister and is in the Federal Court today; Pierre de Bane, who went on to become a minister and a member of the Senate; Alastair Gillespie, who went on to become a minister; Phil Givens, who is the former mayor of Toronto and is a very colourful individual who never really got used to this place and went back to Toronto; our good friend Joe Guay, who was a great parliamentarian and a great committee member and went on to become a minister and a member of the Senate; and there was Speaker Jerome, a very distinguished member of the class of '68 who was a very distinguished Speaker of the House and then went on to become and is presently the Associate Chief Justice of the Federal Court.
Otto Lang who was dean of law at the University of Saskatchewan had a very distinguished career here. John Lundrigan was a very colourful member of the class of '68. He went on to become a member of the Newfoundland government. There were people like Mark MacGui-gan and Patrick Mahoney who are now in the Federal Court. I could go on. Keith Penner is now with the National Transportation Agency. Frank Moores went on to become the premier of Newfoundland. Mark Rose.
June 16, 1993
I know my hon. friend across the way gets a little annoyed about reminiscing, but one of these days he will have a chance to reflect on 25 years of service.
What we have here is a pretty good cross-section of what the House of Commons really represents. Yes, there are some who have passed on and we think of them. We think of their families. We remember our friendship and the association we had together in this place.
As others have said in their remarks, I think what we really want to say is that these members contributed greatly to the institution of Parliament. We value the friendship that was made during the course of our association with them.
We all recognize that we believe in the profession of politics. We believe in this institution. This really is the main hall of the preservation of our democracy and our freedom. All of us can be enriched by the valuable contribution the class of '68 rendered to this institution and indeed to the House.
I want to add my congratulations to those who are here, those who have survived and those who have contributed not only to this institution but in their other walks of life in pursuing the goals and objectives of building a better Canada.
Topic: ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic: CLASS OF '68