David Cameron loses his inspirational father after he suffers stroke while on holiday

David Cameron is today mourning the loss of his father, who died yesterday after suffering a stroke on holiday.
The Prime Minister dashed to the south of France after being told in a 6am phone call from his mother that ‘The Dad,’ as he called Ian Cameron, was seriously ill.
He arrived at the hospital bedside of his 77-year-old father – the man he described as his role model and ‘a huge hero figure’ – shortly before he died.
His sudden death comes little more than a fortnight after David and Samatha Cameron celebrated the birth of their daughter Florence.
Sadly, her grandfather never got to meet the new addition to the family.
The Prime Minister was left grieving for another member of his family less than two years after the loss of his oldest son Ivan.
The six-year-old, who had severe epilepsy and cerebral palsy, died suddenly in February 2009.
Last night a friend of the Camerons said of his dash to see his father: ‘He was so relieved to have got there.
‘He was also thankful that his father had been enjoying a happy family holiday when he passed away.’
Mr Cameron was due to face the Commons yesterday for the first time since returning from paternity leave following the birth of Florence last month.

The Prime Minister’s mother Mary woke him with the early morning phone call from France with news that her husband – a former stockbroker who was disabled from birth – had fallen seriously ill during the night.
Mr Cameron was keen not to miss the first session of Prime Minister’s Questions after Parliament returned early from its summer break.
But a phone conversation with the doctor in charge of his father’s care left him in no doubt that he should get to the bedside as quickly as possible.

He cancelled all his engagements, leaving his Lib Dem deputy Nick Clegg to stand in for him at the Commons, and flew by commercial aircraft from London’s City airport accompanied by his brother Alex and sister Clare.
For security reasons, President Sarkozy provided a helicopter to take Mr Cameron from Nice airport to the Font-Pre hospital in Toulon.
But his father, who had a stroke and heart complications, died shortly after his children arrived.
The friend of the Camerons said: ‘Ian was so proud to have seen David get into Downing Street. Sadly he didn’t see his new grandchild because she was born while David and Samantha were on holiday in Cornwall, and then he and his wife were themselves away.

‘He was not the most robust man and he has had his health problems, but the family had no inkling of this.
‘The Prime Minister got a call from his mother early today and it was clear he had no option but to get there as quickly as possible. Thank goodness David decided to miss Prime Minister’s Questions and got there when he did.’

Mr Cameron had only returned from a fortnight’s paternity leave on Tuesday morning, and is now likely to take some time off to grieve.
The Prime Minister has said he regretted returning to work too quickly after the death of Ivan.
Mr Clegg, who will take over day-today running of the Government, said: ‘My thoughts and condolences are with David and his family at this time.

‘Despite the sadness of today, I am very glad that David’s father lived to see him become Prime Minister and that David was able to be at his father’s side at the end.’

Courage and charm from the man who taught him: never give up:

Aside from confidence and an easy charm, Ian Cameron possessed two characteristics which were usefully passed on to his son David.
One was a fierce determination, particularly in the face of adversity. The second, not unrelated to the first, was an optimistic outlook.
David Cameron’s key life challenges came in adulthood. But the Prime Minister’s stockbroker father, whom he once described as ‘my role model’, was tested from the moment of his birth with severe deformation of both legs.
It is fair to say that in spite of this unpromising start and further serious health problems, Ian Cameron – known to his family as ‘The Dad’ – lived a life at least as full and as fun as the most robust of his contemporaries.
And, of course, he survived long enough to see his second son not only in Downing Street but citing him as the inspiration for the cornerstone Government concept of ‘Big Society’.
Ian Cameron was himself the son of a wealthy London stockbroker. His mother was the daughter of banking family with Polish-Jewish roots.
Born in Aberdeenshire, his disabilities were dreadful; legs shortened below the knees, feet twisted and lacking three toes. He underwent a number of operations in childhood which helped ease the pain and improve mobility, but he did not grow much more than five feet in height.
Home life was not happy either. During the war his father Donald Cameron, who is said to have taken a discouraging approach to Ian’s physical shortcomings, left his mother for a BBC announcer.
Ian escaped this domestic malaise when he went to Eton, where he impressed with his physical zeal and bonhomie. The only sport beyond even the powers of his determination was skiing.
On leaving Eton he trained as an accountant and eventually joined his father’s stockbroking firm Panmure Gordon, where his swift elevation to partner, he wryly admitted, was largely due to nepotism.

In spite of his handicap ‘he liked to party and enjoyed the company of the beautful people,’ a family friend once told me. ‘He almost overcompensated for his disability which, while he never complained about, he must have felt acutely.’
In 1962 he married baronet’s daughter Mary Mount, who came from a landed family which farmed in Berkshire.
A year after the wedding their first child, Alexander was born. Next came a daughter, Tania, then David in October 1966 and finally the youngest, another daughter called Clare.

When David was still small the family left Kensington for a former rectory in the village of Peasemore in Berkshire.
From there Ian made the traditional stockbroking commute each day to the City where he was also a director of the estate agent John D Wood.
The children’s dinner was only served once their father had arrived home. Ian’s twin loves were horseracing – he owned shares in several nags – and White’s, the St James’s club of which he became chairman.
At home in the country he once held the post of High Sheriff of Berkshire. The Old Rectory wasn’t a party political household, though Ian was a natural Conservative; ‘a Thatcherite Eurosceptic’ according to his son.
Ian escaped this domestic malaise when he went to Eton, where he impressed with his physical zeal and bonhomie. The only sport beyond even the powers of his determination was skiing.
On leaving Eton he trained as an accountant and eventually joined his father’s stockbroking firm Panmure Gordon, where his swift elevation to partner, he wryly admitted, was largely due to nepotism.

In spite of his handicap ‘he liked to party and enjoyed the company of the beautful people,’ a family friend once told me. ‘He almost overcompensated for his disability which, while he never complained about, he must have felt acutely.’
In 1962 he married baronet’s daughter Mary Mount, who came from a landed family which farmed in Berkshire.
A year after the wedding their first child, Alexander was born. Next came a daughter, Tania, then David in October 1966 and finally the youngest, another daughter called Clare.
When David was still small the family left Kensington for a former rectory in the village of Peasemore in Berkshire.

From there Ian made the traditional stockbroking commute each day to the City where he was also a director of the estate agent John D Wood.
The children’s dinner was only served once their father had arrived home. Ian’s twin loves were horseracing – he owned shares in several nags – and White’s, the St James’s club of which he became chairman.
At home in the country he once held the post of High Sheriff of Berkshire. The Old Rectory wasn’t a party political household, though Ian was a natural Conservative; ‘a Thatcherite Eurosceptic’ according to his son.
The new Prime Minister later paid tribute to the man who had shaped him through his ‘Big Society’ concept of community, duty and mutual assistance.
He said the germ came from witnessing how his father and mother had lived their lives.
‘My father used to work really long days but he always had time for the parochial church council and the parish council,’ he said. ‘My mother was a magistrate.
‘But the thing that strikes me looking back is how they wore their public service so lightly. This wasn’t some great duty with a capital D that they felt the need to grandstand about.
‘Like so many of their generation the values implicit in the Big Society – duty, responsibility, obligation – are instinctive; it’s just what you should do.’
It’s what Ian Cameron did. And the nation will owe him a great debt if his son can turn these fine words into a coherent future – Dailymail