'Grace and dignity': Former PM John Turner remembered at state funeral

4 min read
fairly difficult
John Turner died at age 91 on Sept. 19.
Send this page to someone via email

TORONTO — Former Liberal prime minister John Turner was eulogized at a state funeral on Tuesday as a gifted politician with a strong social conscience who spent decades serving his fellow Canadians.

An invited list of 170 mourners _ among them the current prime minister and Turner's closest family _ were on hand at St. Michael's Cathedral Basilica for the televised service ahead of a private interment.

Read more: Former prime minister John Turner dies at 91

The U.K.-born Turner, Canada's 17th prime minister, died peacefully at home on Sept. 19, his family said. He was 91.

"Today, more than ever, we need more people like John," Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told mourners. "His legacy calls on us not to wait for change to happen but to stand up and build a better country for everyone."

Story continues below advertisement

While the recently renovated cathedral has a capacity for 1,600 people, concerns over the spread of COVID-19 prompted organizers to limit the guest list. Many of those in attendance wore black face masks and were spaced out among the pews to maintain physical distance.

As sunlight filtered through the stained-glass windows, Turner's daughter Elizabeth Turner praised her father as a dedicated politician and public servant who, despite the demands of public life, never failed to make time for his family.

"John Turner believed in taking the…
Colin Perkel
Read full article