Diane Ford has died. She was the mother of the Premier and late Mayor of Toronto

Diane Ford

 The mother of Ontario Premier Doug Ford and the late Toronto mayor Rob Ford died Sunday night surrounded by family and loved ones. She was 85 years old.

The premier’s office confirmed Diane Ford’s death in a statement, saying the cause was cancer.

“Mrs. Ford was an active member of her community who supported numerous charitable causes. But most of all, she was the rock for her family, especially her 10 grandchildren,” the statement reads. “The Ford family is extremely grateful for the outpouring of support from members of the community in recent weeks. The family would also like to thank Mrs. Ford’s caregivers for their compassionate care.”

Diane Ford met Doug Ford Sr. in the early 1950s, when he was a lifeguard at the Glenview Terrace. The couple got married in 1956 and had four children—two of which followed their father’s political footsteps.

She was often seen working in the background and standing beside her family as they embarked on business or political ventures. She helped Doug Ford Sr. with the books at Deco Labels and was also a stay-at-home mother, offering up her Etobicoke home as a gathering place for her sons’ campaign events and press conferences.

In a book co-written by the Ford brothers, Doug Ford says that “no backyard in Canada has hosted more people in the last two decades—close to 200,000 people.”

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