Stan “the man” Darling
Stan Darling (1911-07-16 – 2004-04-11) founded Stan Darling Insurance in 1938. He expanded the business to a Real Estate agency which remained operational until 2002.
Born in Callander, Ontario, he moved to Burk’s Falls and was elected to the Burk’s Falls Town Council in 1942. He was a councilor for 4 years and reeve for 26 years.
In the 1953 federal election, he ran unsuccessfully as the Progressive Conservative candidate for the House of Commons in the riding of Parry Sound – Muskoka. He tried again successfully in the 1972 federal election and won re-elections five more times in 1974, 1979, 1980, 1984 and 1988. He did not seek re-election in the 1993 campaign, retiring at the age of 82.
Stan was father to Peter and John who operated the insurance and real estate offices after his move to Ottawa as the Parry Sound / Muskoka Member of Parliament. He has four grandchildren; Patrick, Stephen, Jason and Victoria. Stephen and Jason are the current owners of Stan Darling Insurance Inc.
From my perspective, Stan Darling represented the ideal Member of Parliament – strong-willed, outspoken, close to his voters and highly principled. He was also warm hearted and decent, entertaining and loyal.
Stan sat in the front row in Caucus, to my right. He was always on time, up to date on all legislation and always ready to level a blast at the MPs who were either tardy or less dedicated than he thought appropriate!
Stan loved his riding and it seemed everyone of is voters, and in spite of their political allegiance, he fought for them daily and achieved much.
His greatest national achievement was probably the Acid Rain Treaty I signed with President Bush. I believe it never would have happened without Stan Darling’s leadership, prodding and consistency over many years.
Stan became a close friend and valued advisor. I will always remember him with affection and admiration – and a chuckle for many of the delightful things he said and did on behalf of his party and country.
Rt. Hon. Brian Mulroney