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Bittersweet day as Order of Canada awarded to Ralph Klein

CALGARY — The wife of former Alberta premier Ralph Klein dabbed at her teary eyes as she received an Order of Canada medal on her ailing husband’s behalf.

Governor General David Johnston also presented Colleen Klein with a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal at the small ceremony at Calgary City Hall.

It was a bittersweet event with Ralph Klein not well enough to attend, but his wife did provide a bit of levity.

As she posed for photos with Johnston, she opened her blazer to reveal a campaign button from the 1990s with her husband’s grinning face on it.

Rod Love, a friend of the Klein family, says the former premier would have appreciated the honour, but that he always felt public service was a greater reward.

Klein was elected leader of Alberta’s Progressive Conservative Party on Dec. 5, 1992 and was sworn in as Alberta’s 12th premier nine days later.

He led the party to victory in 1993 and again in 1997 and 2001.



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