Public figures react to death of former prime minister John Turner

Former prime minister John Turner, who led the country for just 79 days in the summer of 1984, has died at 91.

News of his death Saturday sparked an outpouring of tributes online from fellow politicians.

article continues below

"A gifted politician, lawyer, and athlete, Mr. Turner became Canada's 17th Prime Minister after having served in numerous other capacities, including as Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Minister of Finance, and Leader of the Opposition. He was deeply committed to the law and democratic process, bringing about much needed reforms to the Criminal Code."

— Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

"More than anything, John was a House of Commons man and an outstanding public servant. He revered our democratic institutions like no other and served his constituents and Canada with great distinction. He will be greatly missed. My sincere condolences go out to his wife Geills and to his family."

— former prime minister Jean Chretien

"Track star, lawyer, parliamentarian, but most importantly father and patriot, his contributions to Canada are profound and his legacy assured. On behalf of Canada’s Conservatives and the Official Opposition, I would like to express our sincere condolences to Geills and his entire family.

— Federal Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole

"Very sorry to hear this news. John Turner’s vitality and determination, his loyalty to friends, his belief in public service and in Parliament itself - he served his country with great distinction and honour. (Arlene Perly Rae) and I have lost a friend. Deepest condolences to his family."

— Bob Rae, ambassador and permanent representative of Canada to the United Nations

"Sad to hear about the passing of former PM John Turner. My condolences to his family and friends for their loss. He was a dedicated public servant who devoted decades of his life to making Canada a better place."

— Ontario Premier Doug Ford

"I send condolences from the Bloc Quebecois and from his former colleagues in our party, and of course my own, to John Turner's family and relatives. We wish them all the courage that such a trying time demands."

— Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet

"I had the privilege of knowing John Turner for most of my life. He had a distinguished career in law and politics. But more than anything else he was a proud and loyal Canadian who cared deeply about the democratic process. John Turner will be missed and on behalf of the people of the City of Toronto I extend my condolences to his wife Geills and his family."

— Toronto Mayor John Tory

"Today we mourn the passing of a great Canadian, the Right Honourable John Turner, who served his country with distinction and pride. On behalf of all Canadians, I offer my deepest condolences to his family and his friends. May he rest in peace."

— Gov. Gen. Julie Payette

"Prime Minister John Turner was my friend, and beloved resident of Toronto-St. Paul’s. He loved our country, and our community, and was always generous in his advice and mentoring. I will miss our time together. My heartfelt condolences to Geills and their entire family."

— Josh Matlow, city councillor for Toronto-St. Paul's

"Former Prime Minister John Turner was a principled and passionate defender of democracy. My condolences to his family and thanks for his service to the country."

— Infrastructure and Communities Minister Catherine McKenna

"(John Turner's) primary ambition has always been to serve his country and fellow Canadians. Which he did with dedication to the task."

— Former governor general Michaelle Jean

"Laureen and I mourn the loss of John Turner, 17th Prime Minister of Canada. Prime Minister Turner served his family and country with great dignity. His legacy and commitment to public service will be remembered for generations. Our deepest condolences are with the Turner family."

— Former prime minister Stephen Harper

"Peter and I are so sad to hear of the passing of the Right Honourable John Turner, former Prime Minister of Canada and a proud and active citizen of Toronto-St.Paul’s. Our deepest condolences to Geills and the Turner family."

— Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett

"Saskatchewan expresses our condolences on the passing of former Prime Minister John Turner. Our deepest sympathies to his wife and children and their families."

— Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe

"RIP John Turner. Our country and democracy is better due to your years of service as a Parliamentarian, Minister of the Crown and as our 17th Prime Minister."

— Brampton North MP Ruby Sahota

© Virden Empire-Advance