Mr. Speaker, this summer, Quebec and Canada lost a political giant, Quebec’s Cree and Mohawk lost a friend, and Montreal’s West Island lost a defender of ecological green space.
I met John Ciaccia during Quebec’s 1981 election. He was on his third term as MNA for Mont-Royal. John Ciaccia had been recruited by Robert Bourassa in 1973 to negotiate the James Bay agreement, and would hold a number of key cabinet posts in Quebec.
As Quebec’s minister of indigenous affairs during the Oka crisis, John Ciaccia promoted peace, respect and understanding. He went as far as to lend his personal dock on the St. Lawrence so that the Mohawk of Kahnawake could ferry medical supplies and food to their community when bridge access was no longer available.
To John’s son Mark; his grandsons Erik and Nicolas; and Norma, his wife of 35 years, please accept our condolences as well as our gratitude for a remarkable man who left a remarkable legacy.