This evening, the TPM Toronto delegation toured crucial locations from
Rob Ford’s life and works.
We began by driving to his house in the suburban neighborhood of Etobicoke in the hopes we might see the mayor and be able to present him with his Golden Duke award. We did not have a close encounter of the Mayor Ford kind, but we did notice there was a branch of Canada’s beloved coffee, pastry, and breakfast chain Tim Horton’s in a gas station a block or so from his house. This seemed like a place Mayor Ford might frequent so we stopped in.
The woman behind the counter at Tim Horton’s said she had just been working there for “almost one month.” Though she had not met the mayor herself, she said other customers and staffers told her he visited the shop. Outside, another woman who worked at the combination gas station and Tim Horton’s confirmed Ford was a regular, however she was unable to answer when we inquired about his favorite items on the Tim Horton’s menu.
“I don’t know I work here at the gas station,” she said before asking us to leave the area so a snow plow could clear the parking lot.
After visiting Ford’s neighborhood, we drove a short distance away to the drug house where he was photographed with three alleged gang members including one murder victim. As we turned the corner, we instantly recognized the garage door visible in that infamous picture. Sadly for us, Ford wasn’t standing in front of it this time.
The next stop on our Rob Ford tour of Toronto was an apartment building where drug dealers reportedly held the video footage of the mayor smoking crack.
Initially, we thought the tower was a far cry from reports that described it as a haven for guns and gangs. It is inside a secure, gated complex called “Kingsview Park.” Though we couldn’t drive through the gates we spotted a young man hanging out outside who informed us that it is hardly your typical gated community. The man, who said his name was Ishmael, laughed when I told him the complex seemed far nicer than reports had led me to believe.
“Check inside the building,” he said pointing towards a balcony. “A lady like jumped from there yesterday. The 25th floor.”
Our final stop was Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School, where Ford helped coach the football team until before he was dismissed amid mounting questions about his drug use. The wall of the school features an inscription with its motto, which may explain why Ford wasn’t an ideal fit for the football team:
“Reason Religion & Kindness”