Rob Ford's family focused on cancer status results
Rob Ford, joined with Renata Ford, embraces his kids - Stephanie and Douglas - as he is announced the winner of the Ward 2 council seat. Ernest Doroszuk/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency
The voting is over but outgoing Mayor Rob Ford’s wife Renata’s mind is on something way more important.
“Wednesday is my election,” Renata Ford said. “Those are the results that we are all waiting for.”
Renata is, of course, talking about a scan Ford — who formally leaves the mayor’s office on Dec. 1 — will receive Wednesday at Mount Sinai Hospital to determine how effective chemotherapy has been in fighting his cancer.
“As far as our future goes, this is what we are focused on,” said Renata. “We are trying to be positive about it and we know it’s in God’s hands.” She said that if the tumour has shrunk or disappeared, she will be relieved. If it hasn’t and surgery or other options are necessary, the family will deal with it.
A third bout of chemotherapy is a possibility.
“We really don’t know right now,” she said.
Seeing Ford without hair shows what chemotherapy does.
“It’s poison,” said Renata.
Needless to say, the pins and needles the Fords are sitting on are far more difficult to endure than what was happening at Diane Ford’s house Monday as the votes were counted. But reminders of just how crucial Wednesday will be were there with Rob and Renata — in the names of their young children Dougie and Stephanie.
Both were emotional as the votes were being counted.
Most affected by all of this was Stephanie, 9, who at one point went over to hug defeated mayoral candidate Doug Ford in a consoling way but then, the pin on her poppy nicked her skin and she stormed out of the room. It was difficult to watch for everybody there because you could see the whole thing has been devastating for her.
I checked in with Renata to see how Stephanie was doing.
“She’s OK,” said Renata. “Stephanie is taking all of this harder than anybody because she realizes this is the end of her dad being mayor and she loves being the daughter of the mayor. She loves being walked to school by the mayor.”
That said, her dad, as he fights cancer, has been returned to the prestigious role of councillor — for Etobicoke North (Ward 2) — and he should have more time to not only walk her to school but walk her home, too.
If it’s any consolation for Stephanie, Ford Nation will always consider Rob Ford to be mayor. Like Julian Fantino is always, even by the prime minister, called “chief,” Ford will be called “mayor.”
Maybe even by Mayor-elect John Tory.
Tory could take it a step further as well. The next mayor has dropped hints that he plans to “put” Rob Ford “to work.”
What about the idea of having three deputy mayor positions and offering one to Rob Ford? Former mayor David Miller had three deputies (Joe Pantalone, Sandra Bussin and Mike Feldman shared the duties after Miller was first elected in 2003, upon re-election in 2006, Miller kept only one deputy, Pantalone.)
It would be the right thing to do. And a smart thing.
Ford represents Ford Nation which candidate Doug, carrying the banner with Rob too sick to go on, found is 331,000 strong. Rob Ford also won his old council seat easily. He is also the frugal councillor with a social conscience, an international celebrity and has worked hard at cleaning up his personal act.
Making Rob Ford a deputy mayor would be a gracious gesture from Tory, who is an old family friend and needs to make amends there. It would also work for Tory because he might want Ford inside his tent counting the pennies instead of being the lone wolf in opposition intent on exposing waste and building on the 331,000 votes for 2018.
Ask Miller about that.
On the downside, there are a lot of media and establishment people wanting to punish Ford, and Tory may prefer to not share the spotlight with anybody.
Who could blame him? He won this election and it’s his mandate.
But, whether or not Ford would accept, it sure would be classy if Tory offered.
Stephanie may not be able to say she’s being walked to school by the mayor. But Tory could ensure for her the next best thing.