Senator Rod Zimmer resigns amid health concerns

OTTAWA – A Liberal senator who made headlines in 2011 when he married a woman more than four decades his junior has stepped down amid ongoing health concerns.

Rod Zimmer, 70, has represented Manitoba in the upper chamber since he was appointed in 2005 by former prime minister Paul Martin.

On the advice of his doctor, Zimmer tendered his resignation, effective immediately, to the governor general late last week.

A long-time Liberal fundraiser and executive at CanWest Corp. and Manitoba Lotteries, Zimmer has been in and out of hospital several times this year, most recently in May with a respiratory ailment.

Prior to being appointed to the Senate, he was diagnosed in 2003 with throat cancer, but bounced back.

Zimmer raised eyebrows when he married Maygan Sensenberger, 23, an aspiring actress who pleaded guilty last year to causing a disturbance while the pair were on board an Air Canada flight bound for Saskatoon.