Doug Ford May Have Revealed The Secret To His Brother Rob's Success

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For Doug Ford, there's one story that captures the legacy of his younger brother Rob, who became the unlikely and then notorious mayor of Canada's largest city.

It's one part customer service, another part shrewd, retail politics.

And, perhaps, provides a glimpse of why Rob Ford, laid to rest Wednesday after dying of cancer at just 46, remained beloved in certain pockets of Toronto and beyond despite his controversies.

doug ford
Doug Ford speaks at former Toronto mayor Rob Ford's funeral in Toronto on Wednesday. (Photo: Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

Doug, a former city councillor who doggedly defended his brother against all comers, shared the tale at Rob's funeral service at St. James Cathedral.

He recounted working late one night at Deco Labels and Tags, the Ford family business, when the former mayor came in with a sub sandwich.

His brother — who called him "Jones," a shared nickname — said he wouldn't believe what just happened.

Rob was at his favourite Mr. Sub restaurant, he said, when a $32 order came in. But the owner didn't have anyone to deliver it.

"I think you know where this story is going," Doug told mourners.

So, some time after 10 p.m. that night, a household in Toronto found the mayor at their doorstep — sandwiches and pops in hand.

"We aren't here as Conservatives or Liberals or NDP or Green. We're here for the Rob Ford party, the party of the people."

"After he told me, I said, 'Rob, you're the mayor of Toronto. You can't be delivering subs,'" Doug said to some chuckles.

Rob saw things differently: "I met four new voters, so I have them as supporters now. The best thing of it all, they gave me $35 and I got a $3 tip."

His brother said fondly, "That's classic Rob."

With that, Doug turned to Toronto Mayor John Tory at the service to tell him that he too may need to deliver subs.

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Former Toronto mayor Rob Ford laughs with his brother Doug Ford during a commercial break at a mayoral debate in 2014. (Photo: Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

Earlier, Doug said Rob saw himself as "Canada's mayor" and also recounted how his brother once promised a supporter in Edmonton that he would help him get to the bottom of his problem.

The anecdotes fit the theme of those celebrating the mayor as a champion of the "little guy," who would phone voters directly and even visit to see problems first-hand.

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While there are those who have challenged that mystique, political differences were put aside Wednesday with many former foes there to pay respects.

Doug thanked Tory, who he ran against for mayor in 2014, for "bending over backwards" for the Ford family. And he said Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne —with whom he has vigorously disagreed with over the years — showed nothing but class.

"We aren't here as Conservatives or Liberals or NDP or Green," Doug said. "We're here for the Rob Ford party, the party of the people."

rob ford funeral(Photo: The Canadian Press)

Doug choked up near the end of his speech, saying goodbye to his kid brother.

"Rob, I'm going to miss you like crazy. I love you more than anything in the world," he said.

And — perhaps in tribute to his brother's better days, perhaps a hint of his own political future — Doug ended with a call to action.

"Don't worry. Ford Nation will continue. We'll continue respecting the taxpayers."

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