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Former senator Joyce Fairbairn has died at the age of 82
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Publishing date:Mar 30, 2022 • 12 hours ago • 3 minute read • Join the conversation
Joyce Fairbairn is pictured in a 2004 file photo.
Joyce Fairbairn is pictured in a 2004 file photo. PHOTO BY FILE PHOTO /Postmedia Network
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OTTAWA — Colleagues of former Liberal senator Joyce Fairbairn remembered her kindness and determination after she died this week at the age of 82.

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Fairbairn began her 50-year career in Ottawa as a journalist in the parliamentary press gallery at a time when very few women were reporting on Parliament Hill.

She went on to enter the political realm, where she became an important adviser to then-prime minister Pierre Trudeau.

Tom Axworthy, who was Trudeau’s principal secretary at the time, called her “a groundbreaking woman.”

In an interview Wednesday he said their families became very close over the years, and Fairbairn was his eldest daughter’s godmother.

“We had a few tears this morning.”

Axworthy said she brought warmth and emotional intelligence to the work, and when members of caucus had issues or problems, they almost always went to Fairbairn’s office first.

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“When you’re in the (Prime Minister’s Office), keeping your caucus together, united, is just about one of the single most important things you must do,” he said.

“Joyce was the Number 1 person for doing that.”

She also maintained a strong connection to her hometown of Lethbridge, Alta., and in a government that had its share of issues in Western Canada, “gosh, we needed that a lot,” Axworthy said.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement Wednesday that Fairbairn was a “wonderful friend both to my father and me.”

“She was a true champion for Canadians and will be dearly missed,” he said.

Fairbairn was made a senator in 1984 and became the first woman named government leader in the Senate.

“I remember coming to the Senate for the first time and looking at her in awe,” said Nova Scotia Sen. Jane Cordy.

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“Even with all the accomplishments that she’s had, with all the responsibilities she had during her career both before the Senate and after, she could have been (intimidating), but she wasn’t. She was kind to everybody.”

Fairbairn retired from the Senate in 2013 after a public struggle with Alzheimer’s disease.

In February 2012 she was declared legally incompetent by a psychiatrist, but continued to work and cast votes in the Senate for months afterward, said a report in the Toronto Star. The issue led to calls for the Senate to come up with rules in the event that something similar happens in the future.

“You just saw this brilliant, brilliant woman who was facing so many challenges, and yet it didn’t deter her,” Cordy said.

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“It was very difficult.”

During her nearly three decades in the upper chamber, Fairbairn’s support of Canada’s Paralympic teams earned her an induction into the Canadian Paralympic Hall of Fame as a builder in 2011.

According to the Canadian Paralympic Committee, she represented the government at the 1998 Nagano Paralympic Games, where she learned that funding issues were so severe there were doubts about whether the committee could send athletes to the next games in Sydney in 2000.

Fairbairn founded a fundraising group shortly afterward. In 2000, she helped launch and became chair of the Canadian Paralympic Foundation, an organization that aims to ensure long-term financial support for athletes.

In a statement released Tuesday, the president of the committee said Fairbairn was a pillar of the Paralympic movement during “critical years of growth.”

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“Her leadership, passion, and determination to strengthen Paralympic sport made a world of difference,” wrote Marc-Andre Fabien.

“She was always a huge fan of all of Canada’s Paralympians, and we so appreciated all of her support.”

Fairbairn was made a member of the Order of Canada in 2015 in recognition of her career, her advocacy for literacy and for the Paralympic movement, and her work with Indigenous people.

She was also made an honourary colonel of the Royal Canadian Artillery’s 18th Air Defence Regiment in 1997.

Fairbairn died Tuesday at a continuing care facility in Lethbridge.

Flags at federal government buildings in Lethbridge will be at half-mast until a funeral is held, and the flag on the Peace Tower will be at half-mast on the day of the memorial service. That date has not yet been announced.
 

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Former MPP known as Mr. Ajax lovingly remembered
Author of the article:Kevin Connor
Publishing date:Apr 08, 2022 • 16 hours ago • 1 minute read • Join the conversation
Former MPP Joe Dickson, known as Mr. Ajax, passed away at 82 years old on Thursday, April 7, 2022.
Former MPP Joe Dickson, known as Mr. Ajax, passed away at 82 years old on Thursday, April 7, 2022. PHOTO BY TORONTO SUN FILES
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The man known as Mr. Ajax has died at 82 years old.

Joe Dickson, who was born in Ajax and represented the riding of Ajax-Pickering as an MPP from 2007 to 2018, passed away on Thursday, according to deathobits.com.

Dickson was a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.

The news of Dickson’s passing was tweeted by The Ajax Provincial Liberal Association.

“His wisdom, his experience, his stories, and his passion for everyone in Ajax will be missed by all of us on the riding association board.”

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Dickson served as a trustee of the Catholic District School Board in Ajax. He also served on the Ajax Town Council from 1983 to 1990, and then again from 1992 until 2006. He was also a member of Durham’s Regional Council.

“I am deeply saddened to hear about the passing of my friend and former colleague, Joe Dickson,” Ontario Liberal Party Leader Steven Del Duca said. “Lovingly called “Mr. Ajax,” Joe had an unwavering love for his family, and the people of Ajax-Pickering, whom he proudly served as MPP. My thoughts are with the Dickson family.”

Dickson Printing, the family-owned business, supported many sports teams.

“On behalf of Ajax Council, I want to express the deepest condolences to Joe’s wife Donna, their children, grandchildren, and many friends,” said Ajax Mayor Shaun Collier. “Joe was passionate about public service, politics, and the success of the community he loved. He will be well remembered for his many contributions to our town.”
 

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Comedian Gilbert Gottfried dead at 67 after 'long illness'
Author of the article:Reuters
Reuters
Publishing date:Apr 12, 2022 • 12 hours ago • 2 minute read • 7 Comments
Comedian Gilbert Gottfried arrives with a duck at the Webby Awards in New York City, June 14, 2010.
Comedian Gilbert Gottfried arrives with a duck at the Webby Awards in New York City, June 14, 2010. PHOTO BY LUCAS JACKSON /REUTERS / FILES
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Gilbert Gottfried, a stand-up comic known for a screwball voice and his penchant for pushing boundaries with jokes about the Sept. 11 attack and the Japanese tsunami, has died at age 67, his family said on Tuesday.

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A statement from his family said that Gottfried, a former cast member on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live,” passed away after a long illness, which it did not specify.

But according to his friend and publicist Glenn Schwartz, Gottfried died because of complications from muscular dystrophy, the Washington Post reported.

“In addition to being the most iconic voice in comedy, Gilbert was a wonderful husband, brother, friend and father to his two young children,” it said. “Although today is a sad day for all of us, please keep laughing as loud as possible in Gilbert’s honor.”


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Born in Brooklyn, and rising up through the New York City stand-up scene, Gottfried was known for edgy comedy that made some people squirm.

Two weeks after the attacks on New York and Washington that killed nearly 3,000 people in 2001, Gottfried joked about it during a roast of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, saying he could not book a direct flight from New York to California.

“They said they have to stop at the Empire State Building first,” Gottfried said, drawing laughs and moans of “too soon.”

Reflecting on the moment later, Gottfried said in a television interview, “That’s the way my mind works. I wanted to basically address the elephant in the room.”

That style of humour also cost him a lucrative role as the Aflac duck in television commercials for the insurer, which severed ties with Gottfried after he made a series of jokes on Twitter about the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that killed 18,000 people in Japan.

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“I love to go where it’s a dark area. You never know what people will choose to be offended by,” Gottfried told The New York Times in 2013.

Tributes poured in from other comic actors.

Seth MacFarlane, creator of the animated series “Family Guy” and director of the comedy film “A Million Ways to Die in the West,” said Gottfried’s outrageous send-up of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address in that movie made him laugh so hard on set that “I could barely do my job.”


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“A wholly original comic, and an equally kind and humble guy behind the scenes,” MacFarlane said on Twitter. “He will be missed.”

Jason Alexander, who played George on the television comedy “Seinfeld,” said on Twitter, “Gilbert Gottfried made me laugh at times when laughter did not come easily. What a gift.”


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One of Gottfried’s best known movie roles was as the voice of Iago, the loud-mouthed, sarcastic talking parrot of the evil Jafar in Disney’s 1992 animated film hit “Aladdin.”

He also reached what would normally be considered the pinnacle for American comic actors by getting named to the cast of “Saturday Night Live” in 1980, but the new cast was poorly received, having replaced highly popular players such as John Belushi, Gilda Radner and Bill Murray.

Gottfried said he could not enjoy the experience, telling interviewer Joe Rogan last year that he felt like a “sacrificial lamb.”

“You don’t want to be the replacement,” Gottfried said. “You want to be the replacement of the replacement.”
 

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Naomi Judd died by suicide: Report
"I'm sorry she couldn't hang on until today," Ashley Judd told the Hall of Fame ceremony.

Author of the article:postmedia News
Publishing date:May 03, 2022 • 21 hours ago • 1 minute read • 7 Comments

Naomi Judd, who with daughter Wynonna Judd formed the country duo The Judds, reportedly died by suicide on Saturday after a long battle with mental illness.

Country Legend Naomi Judd Died by Suicide After Longtime Struggle with Mental Health: Sources

Multiple sources confirmed the news with PEOPLE magazine. A representative for the singer hasn’t yet commented on the reports. Naomi was a longtime advocate for mental wellness.

Her daughters, Wynonna and Ashley Judd, announced their mother’s death at age 76 in a statement on Saturday, saying they “lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness.”


The following day, during The Judds induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame, a tearful Ashley Judd told the audience of her mother: “I’m sorry she couldn’t hang on until today,” adding it was the public’s “affection for her that did keep her going in the last years.”
 
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Naomi Judd died from self-inflicted gunshot wound, daughter Ashley says
Author of the article:Bang Showbiz
Bang Showbiz
Publishing date:May 12, 2022 • 19 hours ago • 2 minute read • Join the conversation

Naomi Judd died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Her daughter Ashley Judd has opened up about the late country star – who died aged 75 on April 30 – and admitted her family were “uncomfortable” about revealing certain information but they wanted to be in control of the flow of information about her death before the autopsy was released.

Appearing on Good Morning America on Thursday, she said: “She used a weapon… my mother used a firearm.

“So that’s the piece of information that we are very uncomfortable sharing, but understand that we’re in a position that if we don’t say it someone else is going to.”


Ashley explained that she was chosen to represent the family to discuss her mother’s passing, and shine a light on the importance of seeking help.

She added: “My mother knew that she was seen and she was heard in her anguish, and she was walked home.

“When we’re talking about mental illness, it’s very important to be clear and to make the distinction between our loved one and the disease. It’s very real, and it lies, it’s savage.”

She noted that her mother wasn’t able to “hang on” despite her planned induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

She said: “Our mother couldn’t hang on until she was inducted into the Hall of Fame by her peers.

“That is the level of catastrophe of what was going on inside of her, because the barrier between the regard in which they held her couldn’t penetrate into her heart, and the lie the disease told her was so convincing.”

Meanwhile, Ashley also reflected on her mother’s final day, and her own “trauma from discovering her.”

She continued: “It was a mixed day. I visit with my mom and pop every day when I’m home in Tennessee, so I was at the house visiting as I am every day.

“Mom said to me, ‘Will you stay with me?’ and I said, ‘Of course I will’… I went upstairs to let her know that her good friend was there and I discovered her. I have both grief and trauma from discovering her.”
 

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Rent Free in Your Head
www.getafteritmedia.com
Naomi Judd died from self-inflicted gunshot wound, daughter Ashley says
Author of the article:Bang Showbiz
Bang Showbiz
Publishing date:May 12, 2022 • 19 hours ago • 2 minute read • Join the conversation

Naomi Judd died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Her daughter Ashley Judd has opened up about the late country star – who died aged 75 on April 30 – and admitted her family were “uncomfortable” about revealing certain information but they wanted to be in control of the flow of information about her death before the autopsy was released.

Appearing on Good Morning America on Thursday, she said: “She used a weapon… my mother used a firearm.

“So that’s the piece of information that we are very uncomfortable sharing, but understand that we’re in a position that if we don’t say it someone else is going to.”


Ashley explained that she was chosen to represent the family to discuss her mother’s passing, and shine a light on the importance of seeking help.

She added: “My mother knew that she was seen and she was heard in her anguish, and she was walked home.

“When we’re talking about mental illness, it’s very important to be clear and to make the distinction between our loved one and the disease. It’s very real, and it lies, it’s savage.”

She noted that her mother wasn’t able to “hang on” despite her planned induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

She said: “Our mother couldn’t hang on until she was inducted into the Hall of Fame by her peers.

“That is the level of catastrophe of what was going on inside of her, because the barrier between the regard in which they held her couldn’t penetrate into her heart, and the lie the disease told her was so convincing.”

Meanwhile, Ashley also reflected on her mother’s final day, and her own “trauma from discovering her.”

She continued: “It was a mixed day. I visit with my mom and pop every day when I’m home in Tennessee, so I was at the house visiting as I am every day.

“Mom said to me, ‘Will you stay with me?’ and I said, ‘Of course I will’… I went upstairs to let her know that her good friend was there and I discovered her. I have both grief and trauma from discovering her.”

She went out with a BANG 💥😮

Not particularly the kind of BANG I want to go out with 😉
 
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David Milgaard, imprisoned on wrongful conviction, dead at 69
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Brenna Owen
Publishing date:May 15, 2022 • 9 hours ago • 4 minute read • 11 Comments

David Milgaard, the victim of one of Canada’s most notorious miscarriages of justice, has died in an Alberta hospital after a short illness. He was 69.

James Lockyer, a Toronto-based lawyer who worked closely on the case and helped found the advocacy organization Innocence Canada, confirmed the death after speaking with Milgaard’s sister on Sunday.

His loss is “devastating for the family,” Lockyer told The Canadian Press.



Milgaard was only 16 when he was charged and wrongfully convicted in the rape and murder of Saskatoon nursing aide Gail Miller, who was stabbed and left to die in the snow in the early morning of Jan. 31, 1969.

He would spend 23 years in prison until his release in 1992.

In his later years, Milgaard helped raise awareness about wrongful convictions and demanded action on the way Canadian courts review convictions.

“I think it’s important for everybody, not just lawyers, but for the public itself to be aware that wrongful convictions are taking place and that these people are sitting right now, behind bars and they’re trying to get out,” he said in 2015.

“The policies that are keeping them there need to be changed. The wrongful conviction review process is failing all of us miserably.”


Lockyer said he and Milgaard met with Justice Minister David Lametti just over two years ago in Ottawa to push for the creation of an independent body to review claims of wrongful convictions.

“I think David’s legacy now is to follow through with that, call it the Milgaard legislation and let’s get it passed, let’s get that independent tribunal. We still don’t have it, but maybe this will put the spur into the Department of Justice to get on with it,” he said in an interview on Sunday.

The establishment of an independent criminal case review commission “to make it easier and faster for potentially wrongfully convicted people to have their applications reviewed” is listed as the top priority in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s mandate letter for Lametti in December 2019. The objective is repeated in his mandate letter following the federal election last fall.


Lockyer said it’s up to Lametti to “get moving” on creating the commission.

“They owe it to David Milgaard and they owe it to the wrongly convicted across Canada.”

During their meeting in 2020, Lockyer said the minister asked Milgaard to sign a copy of the Tragically Hip album featuring the song “Wheat Kings,” which was inspired by his case.

Lametti posted a statement on Twitter Sunday, saying Milgaard was a tireless advocate for the wrongfully convicted who wanted to see the system change.

“I am deeply saddened to know that he will not live to see this happen,” Lametti wrote.

The minister added that he would keep his signed copy of the Tragically Hip’s album “Fully Completely” as a memory of Milgaard.

Milgaard and two friends had been passing through Saskatoon on a road trip when Miller was killed.


A year later, he was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.

One of the youngest inmates, the 17-year-old was raped and attempted suicide. He was also shot by police during an attempted prison break.

“It was a nightmare,” Milgaard said in 2014. “People do not have much love and care inside those walls.”

Milgaard was released in 1992 after his mother, who fought relentlessly to clear her son’s name, pushed to get the case heard by the Supreme Court of Canada. The high court threw out Milgaard’s conviction and he was finally exonerated in 1997 after DNA tests proved that semen found at the crime scene didn’t match his.

A man named Larry Fisher was convicted in 1999 of first-degree murder in Miller’s death and sentenced to life in prison, where he died in 2015.


Lockyer said Milgaard’s late mother, Joyce, was “a hero in her own right.”

“The Milgaards have given us a lot, they’ve given Canada as much as any family could have given Canada,” he said.

Peter Edwards, a Toronto Star journalist who helped Joyce Milgaard write a memoir about her fight to see her son exonerated, recalled a moment that he said sticks out in his mind — when Milgaard visited the paper’s newsroom not long after he was released from prison in order to thank Edwards.

It was a rainy day, he said, and Milgaard wasn’t wearing a shirt because he wanted to feel the rain against his skin after missing it for so many years.

The Saskatchewan government issued Milgaard a formal apology and awarded him a $10-million compensation package.


The province also spent $11.2 million on a public inquiry into Milgaard’s wrongful conviction. The final report was released in 2008 with 13 recommendations to reform prosecution and policing in Canada. Among them was a suggestion that the federal government establish an independent review commission to examine claims of wrongful conviction.

Ron Dalton, co-president of Innocence Canada, said Milgaard could have “turned inward and been very soured on life, but he didn’t let that happen.”

He could have walked away from his advocacy after clearing his name, but he “chose to look over his shoulder at the people left behind, the people who were going through suffering,” said Dalton, who was wrongfully convicted and later exonerated in his wife’s death more than 30 years ago.

Milgaard leaves behind two teenaged children, he said in an interview.

Lockyer said he had visited Milgaard at his home in Calgary about six weeks ago and “he was his usual happy self,” talking about the need for an independent commission and current claims of wrongful conviction in Canada.

When he heard about Milgaard’s death on Sunday, Lockyer said he was just leaving a prison in British Columbia, where he had been visiting with a woman whose wrongful conviction claim Milgaard had referred to him.

“I’m going to carry on doing what David wanted me to do, so there’s a legacy too.”
 

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David Milgaard, imprisoned on wrongful conviction, dead at 69
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Brenna Owen
Publishing date:May 15, 2022 • 9 hours ago • 4 minute read • 11 Comments

David Milgaard, the victim of one of Canada’s most notorious miscarriages of justice, has died in an Alberta hospital after a short illness. He was 69.

James Lockyer, a Toronto-based lawyer who worked closely on the case and helped found the advocacy organization Innocence Canada, confirmed the death after speaking with Milgaard’s sister on Sunday.

His loss is “devastating for the family,” Lockyer told The Canadian Press.



Milgaard was only 16 when he was charged and wrongfully convicted in the rape and murder of Saskatoon nursing aide Gail Miller, who was stabbed and left to die in the snow in the early morning of Jan. 31, 1969.

He would spend 23 years in prison until his release in 1992.

In his later years, Milgaard helped raise awareness about wrongful convictions and demanded action on the way Canadian courts review convictions.

“I think it’s important for everybody, not just lawyers, but for the public itself to be aware that wrongful convictions are taking place and that these people are sitting right now, behind bars and they’re trying to get out,” he said in 2015.

“The policies that are keeping them there need to be changed. The wrongful conviction review process is failing all of us miserably.”


Lockyer said he and Milgaard met with Justice Minister David Lametti just over two years ago in Ottawa to push for the creation of an independent body to review claims of wrongful convictions.

“I think David’s legacy now is to follow through with that, call it the Milgaard legislation and let’s get it passed, let’s get that independent tribunal. We still don’t have it, but maybe this will put the spur into the Department of Justice to get on with it,” he said in an interview on Sunday.

The establishment of an independent criminal case review commission “to make it easier and faster for potentially wrongfully convicted people to have their applications reviewed” is listed as the top priority in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s mandate letter for Lametti in December 2019. The objective is repeated in his mandate letter following the federal election last fall.


Lockyer said it’s up to Lametti to “get moving” on creating the commission.

“They owe it to David Milgaard and they owe it to the wrongly convicted across Canada.”

During their meeting in 2020, Lockyer said the minister asked Milgaard to sign a copy of the Tragically Hip album featuring the song “Wheat Kings,” which was inspired by his case.

Lametti posted a statement on Twitter Sunday, saying Milgaard was a tireless advocate for the wrongfully convicted who wanted to see the system change.

“I am deeply saddened to know that he will not live to see this happen,” Lametti wrote.

The minister added that he would keep his signed copy of the Tragically Hip’s album “Fully Completely” as a memory of Milgaard.

Milgaard and two friends had been passing through Saskatoon on a road trip when Miller was killed.


A year later, he was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.

One of the youngest inmates, the 17-year-old was raped and attempted suicide. He was also shot by police during an attempted prison break.

“It was a nightmare,” Milgaard said in 2014. “People do not have much love and care inside those walls.”

Milgaard was released in 1992 after his mother, who fought relentlessly to clear her son’s name, pushed to get the case heard by the Supreme Court of Canada. The high court threw out Milgaard’s conviction and he was finally exonerated in 1997 after DNA tests proved that semen found at the crime scene didn’t match his.

A man named Larry Fisher was convicted in 1999 of first-degree murder in Miller’s death and sentenced to life in prison, where he died in 2015.


Lockyer said Milgaard’s late mother, Joyce, was “a hero in her own right.”

“The Milgaards have given us a lot, they’ve given Canada as much as any family could have given Canada,” he said.

Peter Edwards, a Toronto Star journalist who helped Joyce Milgaard write a memoir about her fight to see her son exonerated, recalled a moment that he said sticks out in his mind — when Milgaard visited the paper’s newsroom not long after he was released from prison in order to thank Edwards.

It was a rainy day, he said, and Milgaard wasn’t wearing a shirt because he wanted to feel the rain against his skin after missing it for so many years.

The Saskatchewan government issued Milgaard a formal apology and awarded him a $10-million compensation package.


The province also spent $11.2 million on a public inquiry into Milgaard’s wrongful conviction. The final report was released in 2008 with 13 recommendations to reform prosecution and policing in Canada. Among them was a suggestion that the federal government establish an independent review commission to examine claims of wrongful conviction.

Ron Dalton, co-president of Innocence Canada, said Milgaard could have “turned inward and been very soured on life, but he didn’t let that happen.”

He could have walked away from his advocacy after clearing his name, but he “chose to look over his shoulder at the people left behind, the people who were going through suffering,” said Dalton, who was wrongfully convicted and later exonerated in his wife’s death more than 30 years ago.

Milgaard leaves behind two teenaged children, he said in an interview.

Lockyer said he had visited Milgaard at his home in Calgary about six weeks ago and “he was his usual happy self,” talking about the need for an independent commission and current claims of wrongful conviction in Canada.

When he heard about Milgaard’s death on Sunday, Lockyer said he was just leaving a prison in British Columbia, where he had been visiting with a woman whose wrongful conviction claim Milgaard had referred to him.

“I’m going to carry on doing what David wanted me to do, so there’s a legacy too.”
there was some speculation that paul bernardo was responsible.
 

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Beloved life-saving Rhode Island K-9 service dog put down
Author of the article:Liz Braun
Publishing date:May 16, 2022 • 14 hours ago • 1 minute read • Join the conversation
Ruby, a storied police dog serving with the Rhode Island State Police, fell ill and had to be euthanized.
Ruby, a storied police dog serving with the Rhode Island State Police, fell ill and had to be euthanized. PHOTO BY RHODE ISLAND STATE POLICE /Toronto Sun

A beloved dog whose journey from shelter pup to lifesaving police service canine was captured in a documentary film has died.


The Associated Press reported that Ruby, an Australian shepherd/border collie mix, served the people of Rhode Island for 11 years before having to be put down after the sudden onset of an untreatable illness.

The story of the plucky hound was captured in the Netflix documentary Rescued By Ruby, which was released in March.

Ruby was so rambunctious as a pup that she was adopted — and then returned — to the Rhode Island Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals shelter by five different families.

Deemed “unadoptable,” Ruby would likely have been euthanized, but shelter volunteer Patricia Inman convinced Rhode Island State Police Corp. Daniel O’Neil to take a chance on the spirited canine.

The hyperactive little pup was taken on by O’Neil in 2011 when she was eight months old and became one of the first shelter dogs trained to serve with the Rhode Island force.



Ruby became famous in 2017 after she found a missing teenage boy who had been badly hurt while out hiking in the woods.

He had fallen into a ravine and was missing for 36 hours when Ruby found him. In an extraordinary twist of fate, he turned out to be the son of Patricia Inman, the shelter volunteer who saved Ruby’s life when she was a pup.

In an AP story from earlier this year, O’Neil said he knocked on the door of the boy’s home to deliver the good news and he found himself face to face with Inman:

“I said, ‘Pat’ — this was her thank you for saving her life — ‘she saved your boy’s life.’ And we both started to cry.”

Ruby earned national recognition for the rescue. The American Humane Hero Dog organization named her the nation’s Search and Rescue Dog of the Year.

Thereafter, Hollywood came calling and her story was made into the 2022 Netflix movie.
1652788750058.png
 

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Tough sentence for driver who killed mom, three girls welcome but not enough
He will be eligible for parole after serving one third of his sentence.

Author of the article:Michele Mandel
Michele Mandel
Publishing date:May 17, 2022 • 6 hours ago • 3 minute read • 110 Comments
Karolina Ciasullo and her three daughters, Klara, 6, Lilianna, 4, and Mila, 1, died in a crash on June 18, 2020.
Karolina Ciasullo and her three daughters, Klara, 6, Lilianna, 4, and Mila, 1, died in a crash on June 18, 2020. PHOTO BY KAROLINA CIASULLO /FACEBOOK
Bravo for this brave judge.


Dangerous driver Brady Robertson said he wanted justice for the family of the mom and three daughters he killed while speeding and high on eight times the legal limit of THC.

This is as close to justice as we have seen in Ontario: Robertson has been sentenced to a stiff, unprecedented 17 years in prison for the June 18, 2020 collision that killed teacher Karolina Ciasullo, 37, and her daughters Klara, 6, Lilianna, 3, and Mila, 1.

Less 34 months for harsh pre-trial custody, Robertson, 21, has just over 14 years on his sentence. He will then be banned from driving for 20 years.

“Any loss of life caused by dangerous driving due to alcohol, drugs or bad judgment is tragic because it is 100% avoidable. This one is particularly so,” Ontario Court Justice Sandra Caponecchia told a Brampton court.


“The victims were killed in the middle of a summer day, on their way home after playing in a pool in their grandparents’ backyard. The results of Mr. Robertson’s actions were catastrophic. The impact of the victims’ death will last a lifetime. The impact on Mr. Ciasullo cannot be overstated.

“Mr. Robertson must be held accountable for the consequences of his actions.”

Court exhibit photo of vehicle driven by Karolina Ciasullo, 37, in crash that killed her and her three daughters – Klara, 6, Lilianna, 3, and Mila, 1.
Court exhibit photo of vehicle driven by Karolina Ciasullo, 37, in crash that killed her and her three daughters – Klara, 6, Lilianna, 3, and Mila, 1.
Robertson pleaded guilty to four counts of dangerous driving causing death and was convicted on four additional charges of impaired driving causing death after Caponecchia rejected his Charter argument that the “arbitrary and overbroad” legal THC limit of 5 ng/mL is unconstitutional.

The judge rejected the defence submission of a seven-year sentence as not long enough, while she said the Crown’s request for an unprecedented 23-year term didn’t take into account that Robertson is a young, remorseful first offender who suffered from a difficult background of poor parenting, poverty and early drug use.


At the time of the collision, the unemployed high school dropout had already accumulated 15 driving infractions in the previous 2 1/2 years, including stunt driving and careless driving. He was uninsured, unlicensed, in a new unregistered Infiniti G35 sports car and was speeding at 134 km/h in a 70-km/h zone as he tried to outrun a Peel police officer.

Robertson swerved around stopped cars at a red light at Torbram Rd. and Countryside Dr and broadsided Ciasullo’s Volkswagen Atlas. A hydro pole fell on the SUV and the mother and her three little girls were killed.

In the glove compartment of the burning car Robertson had been driving, police found cannabis and four pills — including one that tested positive for fentanyl.


Brady Robertson's blue Infiniti G35 is seen here after he ran a red light at Torbram Rd. and Countryside Dr., in Brampton, and broadsided a white Volkswagen Atlas (top centre with a light standard on its roof) killing its occupants -- Karolina Ciasullo, 36, and her daughters Klara, 6, Lilianna, 3 and Mila, 1 -- on June 18, 2020.
Brady Robertson’s blue Infiniti G35 is seen here after he ran a red light at Torbram Rd. and Countryside Dr., in Brampton, and broadsided a white Volkswagen Atlas (top centre with a light standard on its roof) killing its occupants — Karolina Ciasullo, 36, and her daughters Klara, 6, Lilianna, 3 and Mila, 1 — on June 18, 2020. PHOTO BY COURT EXHIBIT
Just two days earlier, Robertson drove through a stop sign in Caledon and collided with a sidewalk planter before fleeing at 130 km/h. That should have been a wake-up call, the judge said.

But it wasn’t.

“Two days after crashing into sidewalk barriers while in a slumber, he got behind the wheel of his car after having consumed cannabis earlier in the morning,” Caponecchia said. “Mr. Robertson gambled with other peoples lives on both days. The consequences were predictable, yet they did not deter him. ”

Until now, the highest sentence in Ontario for impaired driving causing multiple deaths has been the 10 years given Marco Muzzo for killing three children and their grandfather.

“As far as we’re aware, this is the highest sentence in Ontario,” said Steve Sullivan, MADD Canada’s director of victim services.


The judge acknowledged that a 17-year term is outside the usual range. “Trial judges are on the front lines of the justice system, and they will be the first to see if a particular approach is either not working or has become outdated.”

She boldly determined that time has come.

“The danger created by Mr. Robertson on both June 16 and 18 is not unlike that created by a person who takes control of a different weapon and walks down a busy street firing a handgun at random.

“The community, quite properly, demands that the courts denounce and deter such reckless and dangerous conduct. Significant incarceration is the remedy that most emphatically achieves those goals.”

Robertson’s lawyer Craig Bottomley declined to comment.

“We hope this is over for the family, but I don’t think anyone will be terribly surprised if he does appeal,” said Sullivan of MADD.

In the fight against deadly impaired driving, Caponecchia’s tough sentence is welcome — but unfortunately, not enough.

She denied prosecutor Patrick Quilty’s request to delay parole until Robertson has served half his term. Instead, the man who wiped out a beautiful family can apply for release after the usual one-third of his sentence — or just under five short years.

mmandel@postmedia.com
1652810242709.pngExhibit-19-Photo-of-Ciasullo-SUV-scaled[1].jpg1652810541690.png
 

spaminator

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The life and death of wrongly convicted David Milgaard
Author of the article:Mark Bonokoski
Publishing date:May 21, 2022 • 20 hours ago • 3 minute read • Join the conversation
David Milgaard, who spent 23 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted of murder, is photographed after a news conference held by Innocence Canada in Toronto on Oct. 9, 2019.
David Milgaard, who spent 23 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted of murder, is photographed after a news conference held by Innocence Canada in Toronto on Oct. 9, 2019. PHOTO BY CHRIS YOUNG /THE CANADIAN PRESS
Article content
On June 8, David Milgaard and his lawyer, David Asper, were slated to receive honorary Doctor of Law degrees from the University of Manitoba.


It would mark the 50th anniversary of Milgaard’s wrongful conviction for the 1970 murder of Saskatoon nursing student Gail Miller.

Serial rapist Larry Fisher was eventually convicted of the Miller murder through DNA evidence, but only after Milgaard had spent more than two decades in prison.

“It’s kind of an anniversary of a nightmare for me, so I don’t celebrate it, that’s for sure,” Milgaard told the Winnipeg Free Press.

He still may get that degree, but it will be posthumously.

Migaard died last Sunday in a Calgary hospital after a brief illness.

He was 69.

As someone who has covered crime and punishment for decades, the case of David Milgaard stands alone as one of supreme stubbornness in professing innocence, even though it cost him 23 years in prison when a bogus and remorseful guilty plea would have already had him out.


For years, his only advocate was his mother, Joyce, until his case was picked up by Innocence Canada, a group of committed lawyers who work to free the wrongly convicted.

Milgaard was less than enthused about the honorary degree.

“I don’t usually accept any awards,” Milgaard said from his Calgary home before taking ill. “I’ve always felt I don’t do that much, in relation to helping others.”

When he was notified about the degree, however, Asper was emotional.

“I walked with David out the doors of Stony Mountain prison in 1992, and I’m going to walk into an academic convocation with him in 2022,” he told the Free Press. “Those are going to be two pretty special walks.”

Milgaard’s loss is “devastating for the family,” Toronto’s Innocence Canada lawyer James Lockyer told The Canadian Press.


Milgaard was a skinny 16-year-old when he was charged and wrongfully convicted in the rape and murder of Miller, who was stabbed and left to die in the Saskatoon snow in the early morning of Jan. 31, 1969.

He grew from a teen into middle-age in one of Canada’s roughest prisons, where he was raped, had his teeth broken and often demanded to be put in solitary confinement just to escape the torment.

As crime writer Peter Edwards described one prison visit with Milgaard, “his arms became scarred with about a dozen slashes. They were about an inch long, ugly and deep. Some were from suicide attempts and others were just the slashing that’s common in prison when prisoners choose pain over the dull feeling of being one of the living dead.


“On top of the slashing scars on his arms were a couple of large rose tattoos, also from prison.”

In his later years, Milgaard helped raise awareness about wrongful convictions and demanded action on the way Canadian courts review convictions.

“I think it’s important for everybody, not just lawyers, but for the public itself to be aware that wrongful convictions are taking place and that these people are sitting right now, behind bars, and they’re trying to get out,” he said in 2015.

“The policies that are keeping them there need to be changed. The wrongful conviction review process is failing all of us miserably.”

Prior to his death, Milgaard and Asper were waiting for Justice Minister David Lametti to do what was in the first line of his mandate letter from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — and that was to establish a long-demanded independent review agency of those who maintain they’ve been wrongfully convicted.

But Lametti has been dragging his arse.

markbonokoski@gmail.com
 

spaminator

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'Star Wars' spacecraft designer Colin Cantwell dies
Author of the article:Bang Showbiz
Bang Showbiz
Publishing date:May 23, 2022 • 20 hours ago • 2 minute read • Join the conversation

Colin Cantwell, the man who designed the ‘Star Wars’ spacecraft, has died.


The 90-year-old artist’s longterm partner, Sierra Dall, told The Hollywood Reporter that he had passed away at his home in Colorado on Saturday.

Cantwell, who studied animation at the University of California and also attended Frank Lloyd Wright’s School of Architecture, designed the prototypes for several vessels in the ‘Star Wars’ series, including the X-wing, TIE Fighter, the Landspeeder and the iconic Death Star. He also created the design of the Tantive IV, which was originally intended to be the Millennium Falcon.

After a stint working for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory on educational films, Cantwell got to combine his love of both space and architecture when he moved into the film world, striking up a friendship with the late Stanley Kubrick when he landed a job on the director’s 1968 film ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’.


Cantwell created the dramatic space opening that followed the movie’s “dawn of man” beginning.

“I worked closely with Stanley Kubrick and persuaded him not to start the movie with a 20-minute conference table discussion,” he previously said.

When it came to his most famous work on ‘Star Wars’, Cantwell admitted “a dart being thrown at a target in a British pub gave him the idea for the X-wing, while he accidentally designed the Death Star’s meridian trench, which was used by the Alliance and Luke Skywalker in an attack in ‘A New Hope’.

“I didn’t originally plan for the Death Star to have a trench, but when I was working with the mould, I noticed the two halves had shrunk at the point where they met across the middle,” he said in 2016.

“It would have taken a week of work just to fill and sand and re-fill this depression. So, to save me the labour, I went to George [Lucas, director] and suggested a trench. He liked the idea so much that it became one of the most iconic moments in the film!”

Cantwell also wrote two science fiction novels and worked on the movies ‘WarGames’ and ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’.
 

spaminator

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Illinois man dies instantly after falling into vat of molten iron
Author of the article:Denette Wilford
Publishing date:Jun 08, 2022 • 16 hours ago • 1 minute read • 13 Comments

A father of three died instantly after falling into a vat of 1,440C molten iron.


Steven Dierkes, 39, of Peoria, Ill., accidentally fell in to the vat while trying to take a sample at Caterpillar’s Mapleton Foundry, the Peoria Journal Star reported.

He is survived by his life partner and their three children, according to his obituary.

Half his body remained outside the container, said a colleague at the foundry.

“He died instantly, but not all of him went in,” the co-worker told the World Socialite Web Site. “Part of his body remained on the deck for the coroner to retrieve.”

No foul play is suspected in the June 2 incident, according to the coroner Jamie Harwood, but concerns have been raised over the foundry’s health and safety protocols.

In December, electrical contractor Scott Adams, 50, also died after falling about six metres while climbing a ladder.


His death is still under investigation.

An employee said Dierkes had “only been there for five days” and did not have sufficient training to be on the iron floor, according to WSWS.

“We are deeply saddened by the death of an employee who was involved in a serious incident at our Mapleton, Ill., facility on June 2,” Lisa Miller, a Caterpillar spokesperson, told the paper.

“Our thoughts are with this employee’s family, friends and colleagues,” the statement continued. “The safety of our employees, contractors and visitors is our top priority.”
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
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Illinois man dies instantly after falling into vat of molten iron
Author of the article:Denette Wilford
Publishing date:Jun 08, 2022 • 16 hours ago • 1 minute read • 13 Comments

A father of three died instantly after falling into a vat of 1,440C molten iron.


Steven Dierkes, 39, of Peoria, Ill., accidentally fell in to the vat while trying to take a sample at Caterpillar’s Mapleton Foundry, the Peoria Journal Star reported.

He is survived by his life partner and their three children, according to his obituary.

Half his body remained outside the container, said a colleague at the foundry.

“He died instantly, but not all of him went in,” the co-worker told the World Socialite Web Site. “Part of his body remained on the deck for the coroner to retrieve.”

No foul play is suspected in the June 2 incident, according to the coroner Jamie Harwood, but concerns have been raised over the foundry’s health and safety protocols.

In December, electrical contractor Scott Adams, 50, also died after falling about six metres while climbing a ladder.


His death is still under investigation.

An employee said Dierkes had “only been there for five days” and did not have sufficient training to be on the iron floor, according to WSWS.

“We are deeply saddened by the death of an employee who was involved in a serious incident at our Mapleton, Ill., facility on June 2,” Lisa Miller, a Caterpillar spokesperson, told the paper.

“Our thoughts are with this employee’s family, friends and colleagues,” the statement continued. “The safety of our employees, contractors and visitors is our top priority.”
:eek:
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
31,612
2,158
113
Illinois man dies instantly after falling into vat of molten iron
Author of the article:Denette Wilford
Publishing date:Jun 08, 2022 • 16 hours ago • 1 minute read • 13 Comments

A father of three died instantly after falling into a vat of 1,440C molten iron.


Steven Dierkes, 39, of Peoria, Ill., accidentally fell in to the vat while trying to take a sample at Caterpillar’s Mapleton Foundry, the Peoria Journal Star reported.

He is survived by his life partner and their three children, according to his obituary.

Half his body remained outside the container, said a colleague at the foundry.

“He died instantly, but not all of him went in,” the co-worker told the World Socialite Web Site. “Part of his body remained on the deck for the coroner to retrieve.”

No foul play is suspected in the June 2 incident, according to the coroner Jamie Harwood, but concerns have been raised over the foundry’s health and safety protocols.

In December, electrical contractor Scott Adams, 50, also died after falling about six metres while climbing a ladder.


His death is still under investigation.

An employee said Dierkes had “only been there for five days” and did not have sufficient training to be on the iron floor, according to WSWS.

“We are deeply saddened by the death of an employee who was involved in a serious incident at our Mapleton, Ill., facility on June 2,” Lisa Miller, a Caterpillar spokesperson, told the paper.

“Our thoughts are with this employee’s family, friends and colleagues,” the statement continued. “The safety of our employees, contractors and visitors is our top priority.”
im surprised they didnt toss the rest of him in and cover it up.