Former Alberta Premier Ralph Klein 1942 – 2013

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Former Alberta Premier Ralph Klein

Former Alberta Premier Ralph KleinTHUNDER BAY – Former Alberta Ralph Klein has passed away. The former Premier of Alberta has been suffering from a number of health issues, over recent months. Premier Alison Redford released the following statement today on the passing of former Alberta Premier Ralph Klein; 

“I am truly saddened by our loss of Ralph Klein.”

Former Premier Ralph Klein

“Ralph Klein’s ability to connect with Albertans from all walks of life was absolutely remarkable. He could walk from the Petroleum Club in downtown Calgary to the curling rink in St. Paul and carry on a conversation with absolutely everyone he met. Ralph was a real man of the people.”

“Ralph was a staunch defender of our province as he had a deep and abiding love for Alberta and Albertans. His vision and extraordinary political instincts provided Alberta with tremendous leadership for 14 years.”

“Condolence books will be set up in government buildings across the province where Albertans can pay tribute to former Premier Klein. In addition, an online tribute page will be available for Albertans to share their memories of Ralph. Details will be announced soon.”

“His passing is a loss to us all. On behalf of all my colleagues in the government caucus and my family, I want to offer my heartfelt condolences to his wife Colleen and their family during this very difficult time. He will be dearly missed.”

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne stated, “On behalf of all Ontarians, let me express my sympathies to the family and friends of Ralph Klein and the people of Alberta. Ralph was a force of nature in his home province and left an indelible impression on Alberta politics and his country. He loved his province, and I know he will be missed.”

Klein was the former Mayor of Calgary, and a staunch Albertan who spoke out strongly in support of Alberta. During the energy battles with Ottawa, a famous “Ralphism” was a statement that “Those eastern bastards can freeze in the dark”.

Klein was also in his early years a solid fiscal conservative, who balanced Alberta’s books and keep the Progressive Conservative dynasty going.