17 April 2006

Former cabinet minister dies tragically

vocm.com is reporting that former cabinet minister Rick Warford died over the weekend, apparently in a canoeing accident.

The bodies of Woodford and an unidentified woman companion were recovered from Birchy Lake yesterday. Autopsies are being performed to determine cause of death. The couple were reported overdue on Sunday afternoon and police began a search.

Woodford was first elected to the House of Assembly in 1985 as a Progressive Conservative. A former dairy farmer and sawmill operator in Cormack, Woodford was appointed minister of rural, agricultural and northern development in the short-lived administration of Tom Rideout.

Re-elected in 1989, 1993, 1996 and 1999, Woodford crossed the floor in 1996 to join Brian Tobin's Liberal administration. Woodford served as minister of works, services and transportation and later minister of forest resources and agriculture until 2003. He did not seek re-election in 2003.