It was cocaine that led to his downfall. Somewhere along the line, he had acquired a drug addiction to go along with his taste for alcohol. Then he was arrested for drug trafficking, which he probably did to help pay for his own habit. I assume he went to prison for it since trafficking pretty much always carries jail time. In any event, he was not able to quit his addiction.
It was the classic downward spiral after that. He lost everything -- his profession, his home, his family, his dignity. He literally ended up on Winnipeg's notorious skid row. There were reported sightings of him picking up cigarette butts off the street.
He died of cancer two years ago today.
The Winnipeg Free Press did a major story on his life and tragic descent. His mother summed up his life as follows: Trouble was his middle name. How sad is it when that is what your own mother says? I think what actually sums up his situation is that sign he once had in his office: Illegitimi Non Carborundum. But it wasn't the bastards out in the world who ground him down. It was his own internal demon bastards that destroyed him.
I do feel somewhat conflicted about his sorry life. There are those who think that his downfall was self-created and well-deserved. However, I can't help but feel bad for the man, although I know there are plenty who don't.