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MEMORIAM: Windsor chapter founding member Lyle Dotzert passes away

Lyle Dotzert

Lyle Dotzert

Windsor chapter activist Doug Hayes notes the passing of Lyle Dotzert on December 12 at the age of 94. Doug writes, “Lyle was a long time member and founding member of the Windsor Chapter of the Council of Canadians. He will be greatly missed by all of us. Condolences to his Family.”

Alan Maki writes, “Our family appreciated Lyle’s support and solidarity when we really needed it when we were facing deportation from Canada after being targeted by right wing bigots including Stephen Harper. Lyle Dotzert, a true working class hero.” Dave Crosswell adds, “A true Union Hero (has) passed away. Lyle Dotzert, one of the founders of Local 200, played an important role in the 99 day strike, and so much more. The strike that gave Unions Security, what Hudak wants to take away.” The 99 day strike in 1945 resulted in the mandatory union dues check-off known as the Rand Formula, which came in 1946.

Lyle once wrote, “I got into Ford in 1941 and worked there until 1972, over 31 years. …(In 1945), I was sent to Brantford to win support for the struggle and raise money for the strikers. I called home and heard that the Ford workers had all walked out and that they had set up a blockade of cars, etc. …One of the big factors which helped to win this fight was the unity amongst the Ford workers of all nationalities. Another big factor was the support from others, particularly the workers in the Local 195 plants. They came out of dozens of their plants and joined the picket line, shutting down their own operations. They risked it all at a time when there was no job security, no knowing if your job would be there for you, and when the companies maintained a large industrial spy apparatus and blacklists.”

We join with Doug in extending our condolences to Lyle’s wife Florence, daughters Kerry and Karin, sons Wayne and Gary, his extended family, and his Union brothers and sisters at Local 200.