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2011 with Rene Johnston

Rene Johnston - Staff Photographer

This was a sad year for this photographer. 

Jack Layton's passing was especially bad because he had been one of the constant stories at The Star since I started. 

He was a city councillor riding his bike and I was a young hack learning how to run cameras. 

Then he ran federally for the NDP lead I was there with Linda Diebel. 

When he tried to take down the government with Dion and Duceppe I went to Ottawa. 

But. most of all,  when he walked out on the day he admitted to big time cancer at a downtown hotel just months ago I knew a friend was leaving us.

Rest in Peace Jack,

                                Rene Johnston

 Jack Layton announces that he has cancer elsewhere in his body and will be stepping down from his post as the NDP leader. July 25, 2011.

Sabrina Ahmed, 10, puts her face up to the falling mist at the Water exhibit. The ROM has made a new exhibit all about water. March 2, 2011.

Janna Watson, is a young toronto artist, whose paintings are in the Ritz Carlton hotel, among 450 Canadian works chosen. March 24, 2011.

The twisted-minded guys behind the horror film "Insidious". James Wan and Leigh Whannell (blue shirt), the writer and director of horror film Insidious, as well as Saw and Paranormal Activity.  March 18, 2011.

Rammstein Lead singer Till Lindemann had a LED light in his mouth to light up when he sings. German hard rockers Rammstein, bring a theatrical, often shocking quality to their live show. May 8, 2011.

View from the Tommy Thompson Park looking north to the CN Tower but not too deep into the Leslie Spit park that is open on the weekends .  March 4, 2011.

Tyler Armes, bassist and  Cam Hunter, MC, of Beaches local band Down With Webster in advance of Junos, photographed in the construction zone of the old dark room of the Toronto Star. March 11, 2011.

Mark Hominick has a massive mouse on his forehead after the fight with Jose Aldo from Brazil at UFC 129. May 1, 2011.

George St. Pierre of Montreal takes a left from Jake Sheilds of California at UFC 129. May 1, 2011.

Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi rides the TTC on the way to a meeting on his whirlwind tour of Toronto. February 9, 2011.

Toronto FC Nick Soolsma kicks to the net as Andre Hainsault and Brad Davis of the Houston Dynamo try to keep the ball from centering at BMO Field in first half action. May 7, 2011.

 Asimo stops in front of the kids of St Charles Catholic School to their amazement. ASIMO, or Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility, is the Honda robot, is the first robot to walk independently. May 16, 2011.

Frank gives his dog Micky a kiss.  Frank Vaccaro is currently just under 500 pounds. May 31, 2011.

The pipe marching band walks before the hearse for the procession at the funeral of Constable Garrett Styles heads south on Yonge at Eagle in Newmarket. July 5, 2011.

Hundreds of police attended, including Toronto Chief Bill Blair who wipes his face and watched from a back lot in the blazing sun at the funeral of Constable Garrett Styles in Newmarket. July 5, 2011.

Julia Goerges of Germany screams after the upset win over Jelena Jankovic of Serbia in the first round at the Rogers Cup. August 8, 2011.

Serena Williams  pounds a backhand against Alona Bondarenko of Ukraine in the evening match on day two at the Rogers Cup. Williams cruised to a straight set win. August 9, 2011.

Audio visual techs brave the two feet of water in the photographers pit to clear cables.  The bad weather pulled into Toronto in the morning postponed matches. August 9, 2011.

Leafs' Captain Dion Phaneuf gets ready for the tilt against the Montreal Canadiens on NHL Opening Night. October, 6, 2011.

Colby Armstrong gets up ended over the Montreal goalie Carey Price in the third period. October 6, 2011.

Mayor spokeswoman Adrienne Batra looks stunned as she talks to media after a vote to remove the board at the TCHC. "Sixteen councillors are not interested in accountability at the TCHC" she said after the vote did not pass at City Hall. March 8, 2011. 

Mayor Rob Ford laughs and leans way back in a chair in chambers as the debate rages in City Hall over the Core Service Review. September 26, 2011.

Are Buddy (yellow band) and Pedro (orange band), two African penguins at the Toronto Zoo, gay? Not that it matters, but let's just say their keepers have noticed the two are inseparable, and show signs of mating behaviours. There are other cases of suspected gay penguins -- New York has a pair. November 4, 2011.

John Erb writes in one of the Occupy Toronto tents as Matthew Neeb and Claire Hodgeson share a morning kiss.  Members of the Occupy Toronto Movement had been living in St James Park. October, 17, 2011.

Performer and 2010 champ Tim E from London, Ontario shows his baby blue jump suit as he signs an autograph at the Collingwood Elvis Festival. July 22, 2011.




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Great photos as always Rene. I enjoyed the piece very much.

A daily report ( not asking much but at least once a week)when photos can only be followed by text twitter length.

How great of you being in those places in making of a history. Great photos. Amazing.

Wow, it's been 2 years since Jack Layton stepped down. Still missing him greatly.

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