Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

UPDATED: Condolences pour forth from community after passing of Langley-Aldergrove MP Mark Warawa

The Conservative Member of Parliament and long-time community advocate died in hospice this morning

Mark Warawa’s battle with cancer has ended.

The MP for Langley-Aldergrove passed away early this morning, after what is being called a “brief but valiant battle” with cancer. He was 69 years old.

“He died peacefully with his loving wife by his side at Langley hospice,” his office reported.

Warawa announced his retirement from politics in January of this year, before his diagnosis in April.

“He embraced this journey as he did most things — with an open heart and prayer,” the release announced.

RELATED: Frankly Speaking – Warawa deserving of thanks

On May 7, Warawa found enough strength to deliver his farewell speech in the House of Commons, which was received with a standing ovation and many tears from his fellow MPs from every party. Proceedings came to a halt after he spoke, as dozens of MPs came to shake his hand.

In his last speech in the House, Warawa emphasized the need for greater compassion in end of life care for Canadians.

He had planned to become a chaplain for seniors and people close to the end of their lives following his planned retirement from politics this October.

VIDEO: Langley’s MP Mark Warawa delivers emotional farewell to House of Commons

On May 21, he made his last public appearance, waving from his car and greeting well wishers in the Fort Langley May Day parade.

Read more: Mark Warawa Remembered

Following news of his passing, MPs from all parties and ordinary citizens alike began sending out messages of condolence.

RECENT: Mark Warawa undergoes cancer surgery

“He was a good man, he was well loved in Langley-Aldergrove,” said Tako van Popta, who was recently chosen by the Langley-Aldergrove Conservative riding association to run as the next candidate following Warawa.

Van Popta knew Warawa for many years, and said his heart goes out to Warawa’s wife Diane and all his family.

“It’s sad for me personally, it’s sad for the people of his riding,” he said.

Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer spoke of being elected with Warawa in 2004, and of “learning the Ottawa ropes together.”

“I cannot begin to express the sorrow and loss Jill and I feel today at the passing of MP Mark Warawa,” Scheer said in a statement.

“Mark was an example to which all Parliamentarians should aspire. A respectful contributor to the debate, a fierce advocate for his constituents, and a strong defender of his principles,” said Scheer.

He called Warawa “a true gentleman,” and said the Conservative caucus was devastated by his loss.

“Most of all, Mark was an exemplary family man – endlessly devoted to his wife Diane, his five children, and 10 grandchildren. Jill and I are praying that God will comfort Mark’s family at this time.

Langley’s mayors also remembered Warawa’s legacy.

“Mark Warawa was a great man who served his community and his country with love and compassion,” said Township Mayor Jack Froese.

“With Mark, you always knew where he stood,” Froese said. “He was one of those people who gave politicians a good name.”

“We were truly blessed to have Mark in this community,” said City Mayor Val van den Broek, calling him a great leader.

Both mayors extended their condolences to Warawa’s family, as did Langley School Board Chair Megan Dykeman.

“He was a dedicated, generous and community-centred man, and his contribution to the Langley community was immeasurable,” Dykeman said.

Warawa began his public life as an Abbotsford City councillor, serving for 14 years.

He then moved to the federal arena, winning the election as the Conservative candidate for the newly formed electoral district of Langley in June 2004.

He was re-elected five times, the last time in October 2015, in the new electoral riding of Langley-Aldergrove.

His staff describe Warawa as a devoted husband to his wife of 46 years, Diane, and father to their five children: Jonathan, Ryan, Nathan, Eric and Kristin. He was also a grandfather to 10 grandchildren.

Messages of condolence can be sent:

• By mail to the constituency office at 104-4769 222nd St, Langley, BC, V2Z 3C1

Or

• By email to mark.warawa@parl.gc.ca

A book of condolences is available for signing at the constituency office.

Details for Warawa’s funeral service will be announced shortly.

 

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Mark Warawa passes this morning in Langley hospice. (Langley Advance files)

Just Posted

Memorial to Carson Crimeni to stay in place through to September

Hundreds of tributes have been left at the Walnut Grove skate park

Aldergrove’s new Sea Monkeys club going swimmingly

In first summer, four Aldergrove boys make it to BCSSA provincials

PHOTOS: Adults-only take a dip and sip in Aldergrove

Second event of its kind a hit at the Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience

Controversial Langley transgender activist arrested over stun gun

A highly publicized Human Rights Tribunal complaint has drawn notority to the local activist

Orangeville dominates in Minto Cup Game 2 against Victoria

The Shamrocks pushed the Northmen but couldn’t find a way to victory

Ethnic media aim to help maintain boost in voting by new Canadians

Statistics Canada says new Canadians made up about one-fifth of the voting population in 2016

Wife charged in husband’s death in Sechelt

Karin Fischer has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of her husband, Max

B.C. Hydro applies for rare cut in electricity rates next year

Province wrote off $1.1 billion debt to help reverse rate increase

Speculation tax forces sale of Greater Victoria’s iconic ‘Tulip House’

Bob and Jan Fleming selling their retirement home famous for its thousands of tulips

New police force in Surrey must avoid VPD, RCMP errors made in Pickton case: Oppal

Boots are scheduled to be on the ground by spring 2021

Man at centre of dropped HIV-disclosure case sues province and 10 cops

Brian Carlisle of Abbotsford says Mission RCMP defamed him and were ‘negligent’ in their investigation

Conan turns to the Property Brothers for tips on buying Greenland

Jonathan Scott suggests removing glaciers and mountains to bring in ‘more natural light’

Forests minister visits B.C. town rocked by multiple mill shutdowns

A third of Mackenzie turns out for rally, not much to cheer about

Most Read