Ron Searle, Canadian politician, died at 96

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Dead. Ron Searle, born July 19, 1919 and died August 29, 2015, he was a British-born Canadian politician who served as the fourth mayor of Mississauga, Ontario from 1976 to 1978.

Searle was born in Southampton, England on July 19, 1919 to Ruby and Theodore Searle.

His mother was a seamstress and his father was a purser with the White Star Line and then a seaman with the Royal Navy during World War I.

His parents were married in Edinburgh, Scotland during the war. After the war, Theodore returned to the White Star Lines and was transferred to New York, United States.

He moved his family to New York but succumbed shortly after contracting dengue fever while on mercy missions in the tropics.

His father’s wish was that the family relocate to Toronto Canada where the family had relatives.

Searle attended Harbord Collegiate Institute, where he became friends with Ed Mirvish and Wayne and Shuster, among others.

He admired many of his classmates and families who were new Canadians having moved to Canada from various European homelands where the Nazi tyranny had caused them to flee for their lives.

Searle’s son, Mark, recalled his father often saying that his relationships with these school friends further added to his resolve to do his part against the Nazis.

He joined the Toronto Scottish militia in the mid-thirties, which would eventually lead to his signing up with the Toronto Scottish Regiment immediately upon Canada declaring war against Nazi Germany in September 1939.

Searle landed twice in France, once at Brest and the last time in Normandy.

He was wounded in Verrieres taking three machine gun bullets through his leg. After the war he began a career in magazine publishing.

In 1949 he married his wife Mollie and together they raised one son.

He died in Mississauga on August 29, 2015 at the age of 96. In 1962 he was elected to Mississauga town council and served for fourteen years.

He ran for the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada in 1965, for the riding of Peel, finishing a distant second. He was elected mayor of Mississauga in 1976 and served one term until 1978.

In 1978 he was defeated by Streetsville mayor Hazel McCallion by a margin of 28,005 to 25,029 votes.

He remained active in local Conservative politics, being highly critical of Tim Peterson’s installation as the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario candidate in 2007 after crossing the floor, remarking that the process was “a violation of the democratic principles the Conservative Party has stood for over the years”.

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