Hon. Thanh Hai Ngo: Honourable senators, for the past week we have all been trying in our different ways to cope with the dreadful news of Senator Enverga’s sudden passing. It’s not easy to express the sense of loss of such a close colleague. The initial shock is succeeded by disbelief, incomprehension, anger and also concern for his beloved family.
I admire Senator Enverga for his unwavering commitment to others and especially for his devotion to his wife, Rosemer, and his three daughters, Rystle, Reeza and Rocel.
The Honourable Tobias Enverga served in the halls of this great chamber with integrity and fierce determination as the first appointed senator of Filipino origin. The commitment strengthened respect, compassion and inclusion in Canadian society. Through those efforts, his dedication to the Filipino-Canadian community shines as an inspiration to me and so many others. He was truly a rock star for the Filipino community.
I felt fortunate and honoured to have been summoned to the upper chamber on the same day as Senator Enverga, on September 6, 2012. We attended several outreach events together and tag-teamed community issues of mutual interest. I will miss the surprise visits he made to my office on a regular basis, and I will always remember how, in good times and bad, Senator Enverga never lost his capacity to smile and laugh.
Every single thing he did reflected the depth of his love for Canada, and he showed us that caring for those around us is a powerful thing indeed.
I pay tribute to a devoted parliamentarian, a loving father, a faithful husband and a great man.
Rest in peace, my dear friend.