A tireless advocate for our community, Elgin County honours Deputy Warden Duncan McPhail

March 13, 2023
For Immediate Release

Central Elgin, ON –With the news of Elgin County Deputy Warden Duncan McPhail’s passing on March 11, 2023, Warden Ed Ketchabaw spoke admiringly about a man who worked tirelessly for the residents he served.
“We share our community’s grief, and know the residents of West Elgin and Elgin County as a whole, have lost a true advocate,” said Ketchabaw.

Warden Ketchabaw extends his condolences to Duncan’s wife Norma, family, friends, and colleagues. “Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this difficult time. Duncan was a true family man who would, with a big heart and smile, share his love for his wife Norma, their family and grandchildren.”

“Deputy Warden McPhail will be deeply missed by all who knew him. We will remember Duncan as a trailblazer whose service to our community will remain an inspiration to all of us for years to come,” said Ketchabaw. “He leaves behind an incredible legacy and will be missed by staff, County Councillors and the community. Duncan’s contributions and service to our community will be remembered fondly by all who had the fortune to be mentored by him and work alongside him,” said Ketchabaw.

“Deputy Warden McPhail was a pillar of our community. He was a great colleague, friend and long-standing member of Council,” Ketchabaw said. McPhail served for 17 years on County Council. He was Warden in 2000, 2001 and 2019, and was appointed Deputy Warden in 2020, 2022 and 2023 until his passing. Deputy Warden McPhail was also a dedicated board member of Southwestern Public Health.

McPhail was driven to outstanding community service. Regardless of his role on County Council, he attended to committee assignments, projects and activities with vigour. Known for his wit, his vision for the future and his dedication to the community, “Duncan’s passing is a huge loss,” Ketchabaw said. “The strength of our rural communities are the people who serve and give back to the community, and Duncan certainly did that for many years. He was a proponent for a better Elgin County.”

The flags at all County facilities are lowered to half mast in honour of McPhail. A book of condolences is available in the lobby of the Elgin County Administration Building at 450 Sunset Drive, St. Thomas for residents and the community to share their messages of sympathy. 

Duncan McPhail’s Obituary can be accessed here.


For media inquiries, please contact:

Warden Ed Ketchabaw

Headshot of Warden McPhail in 2019
Headshot of Warden McPhail in 2019 from the Elgin County Archives

Notice of Canada Day Office Closure
Victoria Day Closure 2024
Easter Holiday Closure Notice
Family Day Closure Notice
Graphic to indicate holiday closures at Elgin County Facilities. The Elgin County Administration Building, Provincial Offences Administration Building, and Elgin County Heritage Centre will be closed on Friday, December 23rd at noon. Regular business hours will resume on Tuesday, January 2nd, 2024.