THUNDER BAY – To say the past week has been a challenging one for Mary Kozorys would be an understatement.
Her sister-in-law passed away after a long illness on Saturday and then she was defeated in her second attempt at the Thunder Bay-Atikokan riding by incumbent Liberal Bill Mauro by more than 7,000 votes.
“A serious illness and death are never easy to take at any point in one’s life,” she said. “You have to balance that fine line between family and career.”
She admitted it was hard to take time away from campaigning but said it was necessary for her, as well as her family.
Kozorys said there were many more voters she wished she could have connected with and issues she wanted to have addressed.
Kozorys watched the results come in at home, away from her group of supporters who were gathered at Chicago Joe's. It was a decision she said was made to keep everybody together after such trying times.
When she did return she spoke immediately to the group, getting emotional when discussing the past week.
She thanked those close to her and the volunteers, calling them part of her family.
She particularly broke down when discussing the impact her father had in her deciding to pursue a political career.
“The opportunities he had here to be able to have a family, buy a home and have those opportunities to give back and be involved in the community are things he instilled in us,” she said.
“I think one thing I’m always so grateful to him for is there was never an issue of gender inequality. He always encouraged myself and my sister to take leadership positions.”