Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Mayor, council pay tribute to Clement

Longtime Charleswood rep had 'warm heart'

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A book of condolences will stand in the foyer at city hall for tributes to Bill Clement, who represented Charleswood for 27 years as councillor.

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Flags hung at half-mast and a committee meeting was cancelled on Tuesday at city hall, as the mayor and councillors reminisced about Clement, who died on Monday from complications related to lymphoma treatment.

Mayor Sam Katz, who saw Clement in hospital on Saturday, described Clement as "a great human being" who can not be replaced.

"I loved the man. I am going to miss the man," said Katz, who sat with Clement on executive policy committee and also was the Charleswood-Tuxedo councillor's constituent. "Bill was a friend, a colleague and he was also my councillor."

Since no byelection will be called in the ward before October's civic election -- and Clement had no executive assistant -- Katz said his office will handle all calls and emails from Charleswood-Tuxedo constituents until a new councillor is elected.

"I live in that area. I am the mayor. I know that's what Bill would have wanted," Katz said. "He was a no-nonsense kind of guy."

Throughout Tuesday morning, councillors exchanged recollections about Clement.

St. Boniface Coun. Dan Vandal described Clement as being extremely generous with his time. "He had a gruff exterior, but a very warm heart," said Vandal, who often found himself on the opposite side of Clement on the floor of council. "He was a very fair person."

Old Kildonan Coun. Mike O'Shaughnessy, one of council's two most senior members, said Clement always put Charleswood first. A close second would have been the management of the old Winnipeg Arena and the building formerly known as Winnipeg Stadium under the now-defunct Winnipeg Enterprises Corporation.

"Of all the things he did at council, Winnipeg Enterprises was nearest to his heart," O'Shaughnessy said. "He also loved Assiniboia Downs, which was his escape. And he was very proud of the Charleswood Bridge."

The book of condolences will remain at city hall -- and online on winnipeg.ca -- until the May 19 city council meeting. Funeral arrangements for Clement have yet to be determined.

 

bartley.kives@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 5, 2010 B2

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