Douglas Cockburn Frith

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  • "Regrettfully I was out of the country when my dear friend..."
    - Brian&Yvonne Buckingham
  • "Doug has recently been my neighbour here in Ottawa. He..."
    - Chris Johnson
  • "March 27,2009 Words cannot express our shock and sadness at..."
  • "Please accept my sincere sympathies. Although I knew Doug..."
    - Greg MacEachern
  • "A number of years ago a newly elected rookie alderman got a..."
    - Sterling (Corky) Campbell
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THE HONOURABLE DOUGLAS COCKBURN FRITH, P.C. On Saturday, March 21, 2009, Douglas Cockburn Frith passed away suddenly in Ottawa in the companionship of his beloved Patricia Neri. Loving and proud father of his seven children, Andraya (Graham Kechnie), Sarah (Romano Calvano), Maggie (Matt Watson), Daniel, Kate, Liam and Anna. Poppa Doug will be missed by his grandchildren, Julia and Paige Kechnie, Sam and Elena Calvano and Thomas Whitaker Watson. He was predeceased by his parents, Gertrude and Archibald Frith; sister Sue Kozman; brother Howard Frith. He is survived by his sister Jackie Styles (Geoff), brother John Frith (Maureen), brother-in-law Doug Kozman and many nieces and nephews. Douglas graduated from the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Toronto in 1968. He was first elected as an Alderman in the City of Sudbury in 1971 at the age of 26, and later served as Chairman of the Regional Municipality of Sudbury between 1977 and 1980. Douglas was first elected as the Member of Parliament for Sudbury in 1980 and held this position until 1988. Upon his election, Douglas was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Health and Welfare in the final government of Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. Between 1980 and 1984, Douglas chaired the Special Committee on Pension Reform. In 1984 Douglas was one of only forty Liberal MPs to be re-elected and proudly served as Chairman of the National Liberal Caucus between 1984 and 1987. He was appointed to the Federal Cabinet under Prime Minister John Turner and became Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. Between 1984 and 1988, Douglas held the portfolio of Opposition Critic for National Defence and National Health and Welfare. Douglas retired from politics in 1988 and accepted an appointment as Senior Vice-President with Hill & Knowlton Canada and ultimately became Chairman of the company in 1995. Between 1996 and 2008, Douglas served as President of the Canadian Motion Picture Distributors Association. Douglas served as Chair of the Education Foundation of the Canadian Association of Former Parliamentarians (CAFP) and as the current Chair of the CAFP. In 2008, he joined Global Public Affairs as Vice Chair. Douglas was honoured for his public service with the Queen's Jubilee Medals in 1977, 1992 and 2002 and was the recipient of the Public Service Award in 1988 for his work in the area of pension reform. He was a member of numerous Boards, including the Toronto East General Hospital, the Canadian Council on Aboriginal Business and the Canadian Film Centre. His dedication to Canada's First Nations remained a priority throughout his life, most recently consulting for the Government of Ontario Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs. Douglas was larger than life. He was defined by his boundless energy, sense of humour and fierce loyalty, and was passionate about his family, friends and politics. Douglas was a genuine and charismatic man who left a lasting impression on everyone he met. He could hold a room with his unmatched story-telling. We will miss his daily phone calls, words of encouragement, big bear hugs, and distinctive whistle. His daughters wish they could have one last jive with their Dad. He loved his children "to the core" and will never be forgotten. The echo of his morning songs will resonate in our memories for all-time: "He liked his pancakes hot, he liked his pancakes cold, he liked his pancakes any way at all." The family will receive friends at the HUMPHREY FUNERAL HOME - A.W. MILES CHAPEL, 1403 Bayview Avenue (south of Davisville Avenue) from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 26. Funeral service will be held at the ROSEDALE UNITED CHURCH , 159 Roxborough Drive, on Saturday, March 28 at 11 o'clock. Charitable contributions may be made to the Foundation for the Advancement of Aboriginal Youth of the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business or the Educational Foundation of the Canadian Association of Former Parliamentarians. Condolences and memories may be forwarded through

Funeral Home
Humphrey Funeral Home A.W. Miles - Newbigging Chapel Limited
1403 Bayview Avenue
Toronto, ON M4G 3A8
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Published in the Toronto Star on Mar. 24, 2009