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Tribute Statement in Honour of the Late Honourable Bert Brown

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Tribute Statement in Honour of the Late Honourable Bert Brown

Hon. Donald Neil Plett: Honourable senators, I as well would like to pay tribute to my very good friend Bert Brown.

Bert and I sat side by side in the Senate for a few years, and I really got to appreciate Bert and Alice. I met Bert and Alice before I was in the Senate when I was President of the Conservative Party of Canada. They were such great supporters, and my wife, Betty, and I had many good times with Bert and Alice. I want to assure Bert’s daughter, Angela, that our thoughts and prayers are with her.

Bert did not quite reach the age of 80 years old; he passed away just three years after the love of his life, Alice. Bert had some struggles over the last years, and we are happy that he has been able to go on to a better place.

I had the privilege of speaking at Bert’s retirement party in Alberta when he retired from the Senate, and I mentioned at his retirement that Bert and I had been appointed to the Senate in exactly the same way. And, of course, everybody wanted to know what I was talking about, because Albertans actually believe that they have elected people to this chamber, so I said to everyone at Bert’s retirement that the only difference was in the numbers.

Bert had been nominated by 312,000 Albertans, and his name was passed on to the Prime Minister, who passed his name on to the Governor General, who appointed Bert to the Senate. I was nominated by one person, and that happened to be the Prime Minister, who put my name forward to the Governor General, and I was appointed to this august chamber.

To my Alberta colleagues, I respect the fact that you did a little more work to get here maybe than others in campaigning, but we were all appointed in exactly the same way.

Bert and I had words about that. When I chaired the Manitoba election campaign, he wanted me to put an elected Senate as the question on the ballot, and we didn’t agree about that. We didn’t agree on everything. Bert and I agreed on climate change, and I hope I won’t be run out of here on a rail because of that. So, those of you who knew where Bert was on climate change now know where I am on climate change.

I thank you, colleagues, for the opportunity to remember a great Albertan, a great Canadian and a great senator. Please join me, as well, in wishing Angela all the best without either of her parents.

Thank you.

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