Unexpectedly on the morning of Saturday, December 5, 2020, we lost our wonderful and strong husband, father, grandpa and dear friend – the Honourable Ronald Albert Irwin – at age 84. Ron was born on October 29, 1936 in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario.
He is survived by his loving wife and soulmate of 57 years, Margaret (Frech), his blue bird. Loving father and friend of Brady (Martha), Toni and Nicole (John Wilkin). Proud grandpa of Camille, Ronald Rory, Thomas, Briana, Bryn, Alec, Tavish, and Campbell. Much loved by his fur friend Dawson. Ron was predeceased by his parents, Antonietta Delabbio and Albert “Red” Irwin.
He was a special friend to many. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.
Ron was a hard worker, dedicated to his community, city and country. He loved to travel and always wished for another coffee on the balcony in Italy or a quick trip to Las Vegas. He loved his summers out at camp and putting his handyman skills to use. He loved music, politics, football and most importantly spending time with his family. There are not enough words to describe how much he will be missed. Ron will be remembered for his many accomplishments.
“A leader and visionary, he is the only local political leader to have served as a school board trustee, City Councillor, Member of Parliament, Privy Councillor, Ambassador and Counsul General. From 1993 to 1997, he served the country of Canada as the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Canadian Ambassador to Ireland (1998–2001) and Counsul General of Canada in Boston (2001–2005). He was Sault Ste. Marie’s Member of Parliament from 1980 to 1984 and from 1993 to 1997.”
He always took great pride in being involved in his community and country.
Thank you to the City of Sault Ste Marie for their beautiful ceremony recognizing Ron, renaming City Hall to the Ronald A. Irwin Civic Centre. We are so grateful he was able to be a part of this moment. Thank you to the staff at Sault Area Hospital, especially to the Emergency, Cath Lab, and 3C nurses – Reid, Willow, Jill, Corey, Elliot, Nicole and Monique. You gave us the comfort and knowledge to go through this very difficult time, and we are forever thankful.
Friends and family are invited to visit at Northwood Funeral Home Cremation and Reception Centre (942 Great Northern Rd, 705-945-7758) on Wednesday, December 9, 2020 from 10:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. Please call the funeral home at 705-945-7758 between 9:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 8, 2020 to schedule a time for the visitation. Due to the current pandemic there is a maximum attendance restriction of 40 attendees in the Funeral Home at one time. Mandatory for everyone is the use of hand sanitizer, masks or face coverings and physical distancing of 2 meters unless members of the same household. Due to attendance restrictions a private family service will be held and for those who wish to view, it will be streaming live through Facebook at 2:00 p.m. on the Northwood Funeral Home Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/northwoodfuneralhome/. Simply be on the Northwood Funeral Home Facebook home page at the designated time and the video will appear when the service begins.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to The Hon. Ronald A. Irwin Student Leadership Bursary Fund at Algoma University would be appreciated by the family. https://www.algomau.ca/giving/how-to-give/