Some Canadian newsmakers who died in 2015

A list of some Canadian newsmakers who died in 2015:


5 - Earl MacNaughton, 95, founding dean of the College of Physics at the University of Guelph.

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7 - Gilbert Finn, 94, the former lieutenant-governor of New Brunswick who protested Dr. Henry Morgentaler's advocacy of abortion rights.

7 - J.P. Parise, 73, a member of Canada's 1972 Summit Series team who played a majority of his NHL career for the Minnesota North Stars, from lung cancer.

14 - Supercentenarian Colombe Benoit-Leclerc -- aged 111 years, 343 days -- at the General Hospital of Quebec.

16 - Renowned painter Ted Harrison, 88, whose swirling lines and brightly coloured depictions of landscapes and people made his work internationally recognizable.

17 - Comedian-actor-writer Don Harron, 90, who entertained generations of Canadians with his comic alter ego Charlie Farquharson and helped bring the Canadian classic novel "Anne of Green Gables" from the page to the stage.

19 - Former Bloc Quebecois MP Michel Guimond, 61. He held the riding of Montmorency-Charlevoix-Haute-Cote-Nord between 1993 and 2011.

20 - Makayla Sault, 11, an Ontario aboriginal girl who refused to continue with chemotherapy and opted for alternative healing methods to treat her cancer. She died after suffering a stroke a day earlier.

Makayla Sault in an image from video

21 - RCMP officer David Matthew Wynn, 42, who never regained consciousness after being shot in the head while investigating a vehicle theft north of Edmonton.

23 - Bud Miller, 91, an Alberta MLA from 1971-86.

24 - Legendary figure skater Toller Cranston, 65, a six-time national champion whose unique artistic vision forever changed the sport. He won bronze medals at the 1974 world championships in Munich and the 1976 Innsbruck Olympics.

24 - Link Byfield, 63, a conservative columnist, politician and publisher whose Alberta Report magazine was once a leading voice of Canadian conservatives. He was also a founding member of the Wildrose Party.

27 - Businessman and philanthropist Joseph Rotman, 80, who founded many companies in oil and gas, real estate and venture capital. He was inducted in the Canadian Business Hall of Fame as a companion in May 2009 and appointed an officer of the Order of Canada in 1995.

27 - Kevin McIntosh, 64, a longtime journalist and key figure in the digital transformation of TC Media newsrooms.

29 - Peter Towe, 91, former Canadian Ambassador to the United States from 1977-81.


5 - Award-winning Quebec author Louise Maheux-Forcier, 85.

9 - Claude Ruel, 76, a reluctant coach who guided the Montreal Canadiens to a Stanley Cup in 1969. He spent his entire hockey career in the Canadiens organization, mostly in scouting and player development.

9 - Canadian dance great Grant Strate, 87. He joined the National Ballet of Canada in 1951 and became its first resident choreographer.

9 - Civil servant and diplomat Max Yalden, 84. He was named an officer of the Order of Canada in 1988 and promoted to companion in 1999.

12 - Alison Gordon, 72, a female sportswriting pioneer who broke down barriers that had previously kept women out of the locker-room.

14 - Helen Glass, 97, former president of the Canadian Nurses Association.

15 - Former NHL defenceman Steve Montador, 35. He had 33 goals and 98 assists in 571 career NHL games.


2 - Tom Butters, 89, an Order of Canada recipient who founded the Inuvik Drum newspaper and served as a N.W.T. MLA for 21 years (1970-91).

5 - Radio personality and actor Fred Latremouille, 69, a member of the Canadian Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

6 - Sgt. Andrew Joseph Doiron, 31, in a friendly nightime shooting by Kurdish Peshmerga soldiers in Iraq, marking Canada's first casualty as part of the U.S.-led coalition against ISIL.

Sergeant Andrew Joseph Doiron

7 - Former Toronto NDP MP Neil Young, 78, an MP (1980-93).

8 - Ivan Messmer, 83, a former mayor of Penticton, B.C. (1980-86), a member of the province's Social Credit party (1986-91) and cabinet minister.

11 - Sportscaster Al McCann, 85. He was inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame in 1993.

13 - Academic and biochemist George Connell, 84, former president of th University of Western Ontario and the University of Toronto. He was a principal advisor to the Krever Inquiry, established in the wake of Canada's tainted blood scandal, and the inquiry looking into Walkerton's contaminated water supply.

16 - Allan Rowe, 58, a member of the Liberal caucus in the Nova Scotia legislature and a former broadcast journalist.

20 - Bud Ings, 89, a Liberal member of the P.E.I. legislature from 1970-82. He served as Agriculture Minister and as Health Minister.

21 - Actress Alberta Watson, 60, after a lengthy battle with cancer.


2 - Veteran B.C. broadcaster Ben Meisner, 76, known as the "Voice of the North," after a short battle with cancer.

4 - Former Montreal Canadiens great Elmer Lach, 97, who fed passes to Maurice (Rocket) Richard on the famous Punch Line. He won Stanley Cups in 1944, 1946 and 1953 as well as the Hart Trophy in 1944-45. He was enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1966.

6- Dollard St. Laurent, 85, who won five Stanley Cups in the 1950s as a defenceman for the Montreal Canadiens and Chicago Blackhawks.

6 - David Kaplan, 91, who became a music professor at the University of Saskatchewan in 1960, and ended up teaching there for more than 40 years. He also created the University of Saskatchewan concert band and conducted the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra for 10 years.

8 - Cardinal Jean-Claude Turcotte, 78, archbishop of Montreal from 1990-2012, after a lengthy illness. During his religious career, he took part in two conclaves that chose the successors to two popes, Jean-Paul II and Benedict XVI.

9 - Paul Almond, 83, a film and television producer and author.

13 - Supercentenarian Orma Slack -- aged 112 years, 53 days -- at the Westgate Lodge Nursing Home in Belleville, Ont.

14 - Ottawa Senators assistant coach Mark Reeds, 55, of cancer.

14 - Figure skating coach Sheldon Galbraith, 92. His students included 1948 Olympic champion Barbara Ann Scott, 1954 and 1955 world pair champions Frances Dafoe and Norris Bowden, 1960 Olympic pair champions Barbara Wagner and Bob Paul and 1962 world champion Donald Jackson.

14 - Leslie Peterson, 91, former Attorney General of B.C. (1968-72).

15 - Actor Jonathan Crombie, 48, best known for his role as Gilbert Blythe in the Anne of Green Gables television movies, from complications from a brain hemorrhage.

16 - Marjorie Elliott Sypher, 89. She served as the First Lady of Costa Rica from 1974 to 1978 during the administration of her husband, former President Daniel Oduber Quiros.

19 - Stuntman Tony Morelli, 58. His credits include "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," "X-Men: The Last Stand" and "The Cabin in the Woods."

22 - American-born children's entertainer Lois Lilienstein, 78, of Sharon, Lois & Bram fame, from a rare form of cancer. Their beloved series "The Elephant Show" ran from 1984 to 1989 on CBC.

22 - Alasdair Graham, 85, former Nova Scotia senator and federal cabinet minister.

23 - Senate Speaker Pierre Claude Nolin, 54, after a five-year battle with a rare form of cancer.

24 - Raymond Roussin, 75, former Archbishop of Vancouver (2004-2009).

25 - Christine Stewart, 74, who served in the Chretien cabinet, first as Secretary of State (Latin America and Africa) from 1993-97, and then as Minister of the Environment from 1997-99.

26 - Hockey Hall-of-Famer Marcel Pronovost, 84, who spent 15 years with the Detroit Red Wings before capping his playing career with a five-year run in Toronto.

27 - Longtime Canadian swim coach Randy Bennett, 51, from a form of skin cancer.

27 - Economist and professor Abraham Rotstein, 86.

30 - Music video and film director Steven Goldmann, 53. Among his catalogue: Shania Twain's "(If You're Not in It for Love) I'm Outta Here!," Emerson Drive's "Moments," Faith Hill's "This Kiss," Collin Raye's "I Think About You."


1 - Elizabeth Whittall, 78, who won two swimming gold medals at the 1955 Pan American Games and represented Canada at the Summer Olympics the following year.

2 - Canadian soprano Clarice Carson, 85. Before she retired in 1986, Carson performed with opera companies in North and South America and Europe.

10 - Toronto Star reporter Barbara Turnbull, 50, a quadriplegic who became a champion of disability rights and organ donation.

11 - Alan Borovoy, 83, a lawyer and human rights activist who served as general counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association from 1968 to 2009.

15 - Liberal MP Claude Lajoie, 87. He served the Quebec riding of Trois-Rivieres from 1971-84.

17 - Artist Gerald Smith, 85, after a battle with cancer and kidney disease.

18 - Frank Appleby, 101, who served in the Royal Canadian Air Force in the Second World War and was an Alberta PC MLA from 1971-86.

18 - Al Matsalla, 89, who served as a Saskatchewan NDP MLA from 1967-82.

19 - Entrepreneur Joseph J. Barnicke, 92, who established J.J. Barnicke Limited and made it one of the most successful commercial and industrial real estate brokerage companies in Canada.

25 - George Braden, 65, Government Leader in the Northwest Territories from 1980-1984, of gastric cancer.

28 - Esther Ghan Firestone, 90, the first female cantor in Canada.

30 - Science fiction author Joel Champetier, 57, after a battle with cancer.


1 - Former Quebec premier Jacques Parizeau, 84, the blunt-talking sovereigntist premier whose strategic cunning came within a whisker of ripping Quebec out of Canada in the 1995 provincial referendum.

Jacques Parizeau has died

2 - Norm Weiss, 79, who served as an Alberta PC MLA from 1979-93.

5 - Anita Hagen, 84, who served as a B.C. NDP MLA from 1986-96. She held posts of Education Minister, Minister of Multiculturalism and Human Rights, and Deputy Premier.

8 - Jazz drummer Archie "Mr. Swing" Alleyne, 82, who played with influential jazz musicians such as Billie Holiday, Lester Young and Stan Getz.

8 - Edmonton police Const. Daniel Woodall, 35, fatally shot as he tried to serve an arrest warrant to a man suspected of the anti-Semitic bullying of an Edmonton man and his family.

10 - Larry Fisher, 65, while serving a life sentence for rape and murder. He was responsible for the 1969 murder of nursing student Gail Miller that put an innocent man, David Milgaard, behind bars for 23 years before being released in 1992, with the emergence of new DNA evidence linking Fisher with the murder.

11 - John B. Stewart, 90, a Liberal MP from 1962-68 who was appointed to the Senate and served from 1984-99.

12 - Actor and comic Rick Ducommun, 62, whose movie roles included parts in "The 'Burbs" and "Groundhog Day."

15 - Artist/professor/sculpture Wendy Coburn, 51, best known for her video "Anatomy of a Protest."

15 - Jean Dore, 70, Montreal's two-term mayor and longtime municipal figure, after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

20 - Canadian-born Miriam Schapiro, 91, a pioneering feminist artist.

21 - Governor General's Award-winning author Dave Godfrey, 76, of pancreatic cancer.

25 - Award-winning Quebec poet and novelist Helene Monette, 55, after a battle with cancer.

28 - Wally Stanowski, 96, the oldest surviving Toronto Maple Leaf and last link to the 1940s Stanley Cup wins.

30 - Physician and hospital administrator Arthur Porter, 59, at a cancer hospital in Panama, where he was fighting extradition to face fraud charges in Canada related to a $1.3-billion hospital project in Montreal.


6 - Stan Carew, 64, a broadcaster for nearly five decades and host of CBC Radio's "Weekend Mornings" for 18 years.

7 - Keith Brown, 88, whos served as an Ontario PC MPP from 1959-67 representing the riding of Peterborough.

10 - Opera singer Jon Vickers, 88, one of the world's leading tenors for more than two decades, after a struggle with Alzheimer's disease.

11 - NASA scientist, Claudia Alexander, 59, of breast cancer. She was the last project manager of NASA's Galileo mission to Jupiter and until her death managed the U.S.'s role in the European Rosetta comet mission.

15 - Singer David Somerville, 81, co-founder and original lead singer of 1950s doo-wop group The Diamonds, who had 16 Billboard Hits between 1956 and 1961.

16 - Jim Mayne, 64, former leader of the Prince Edward Island New Democratic Party from 1983-89.

17 - Don Fontana, 84, a top-ranking Canadian tennis player from the 1950s and 1960s. He was inducted into the Canadian Tennis Hall of Fame in 2000.

18 - Elmer Borstad, 90, a two-term mayor of Grande Prairie, Alta., and later a Alberta PC MLA from 1979-82.

26 - Flora MacDonald, 89, who served as a senior cabinet member in two Conservative federal governments and made a run for the party's leadership in 1976.

Former politician Flora MacDonald dies at 89

30 - John Bitove Sr., 87, the Toronto businessman who built a food, beverage and catering empire.

31 - Hall of Fame wrestler "Rowdy" Roddy Piper, 61, the kilt wearing trash-talker who headlined the first WrestleMania and later found movie stardom.


1 - Diane Parsons, 64, a Halifax woman who led a $1.18 billion class-action settlement for those infected with hepatitis C.

2 - Phyllis Grosskurth, 91, a Governor General's award-winning biographer and distinguished University of Toronto professor.

3 - Design personality Chris Hyndman, 49, an accidental TV star best known for his on-screen and off-screen partnership with fellow decorator and husband Steven Sabados.

3 - Designer Arnold Scaasi, 85, whose flamboyant creations adorned first ladies, movie stars and socialites.

7 - Frances Kelsey, 101, a Canadian-born doctor known for keeping the morning sickness drug thalidomide off the U.S. market in the 1960s.

8 - Chris Decker, 73, a United Church clergyman, businessman and Newfoundland and Labrador MLA who served The Straits-White Bay North from 1985-99.

8 - NHL defenceman Gus Mortson, 90, an eight-time NHL all-star who won four Stanley Cups in a five-season span while with the Toronto Maple Leafs (1947-49, 1951).

10 - Donald McInnes, 81, a former Nova Scotia PC MLA who served the Pictou West riding from 1978-98.

13 - Bob Fillion, 95, a former Montreal Canadiens left winger who won two Stanley Cups (1944, 1946) and the oldest living former Canadiens player.

14 - Joe Reid, 97, a former St. Catharines mayor (1973-76) and Progressive Conservative MP (1979-1988).

24 - Longtime Chicago Blackhawks forward Ron "Chico" Maki, 76, and won a Stanley Cup with the club in 1961.

27 - Justice Marc Rosenberg of the Ontario Court of Appeal, 65, of brain cancer.

28 - Al Arbour, 82, Hall of Fame coach of the New York Islanders dynasty that won four Stanley Cups (1980-83). His 782 regular-season victories are the second most in league history behind only Scotty Bowman.


2 - Stewart McCrae, 85, former Progressive Conservative MLA for Calgary-Foothills from 1973-1982, of cancer.

4 - Canadian Country Music Hall-of-Famer Hal Willis, 82, best known for the 1964 million-selling hit "The Lumberjack." As a songwriting team his wife Ginger, they had their songs recorded by legendary Nashville stars Patsy Cline, Kitty Wells, Jim Reeves, Ernest Tubb, Bobby Helms, The Wilburn Brothers and Flatt & Scruggs.

5 - Jacques Israelievitch, 67, a renowned violinist and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra's longest-serving concertmaster.

8 - Basil H. Johnston, 86, respected author, storyteller and preserver of the Anishnaabe language.

14 - Hugh O'Neil, 79, a former Ontario Liberal MPP and cabinet minister who served the riding of Quinte from 1975-95.

19 - Former NHL enforcer Todd Ewen, 49, who racked up 1,914 penalty minutes throughout his 11-year NHL career.

24 - Patrick O'Donnell, 75, former Vice Chief of the Defence Staff.

24 - Actor and musician Hugo St-Cyr, 36, one of the stars of the hit Quebec TV show Watatatow, of bone cancer.

26 - Bill Freedman, a respected ecologist and major figure with the Nature Conservancy of Canada, 65, following a battle with cancer.

28 - Famed tenor Michael Burgess, 70, who spellbound theatre audiences as Jean Valjean in "Les Miserables" and was well-known to sports fans for his stirring rendition of "O Canada," after a lengthy battle with skin cancer.


3 - Stewart McInnes, 78, a highly regarded lawyer, arbitrator and federal politician who served in the cabinet of former prime minister Brian Mulroney.

9 - Veteran crime writer Eric Wright, 86, beloved for his Inspector Charlie Salter mystery series, after a battle with kidney cancer.

12 - Paul Johnson, 86, a Newfoundland businessman, noted philanthropist and pioneer of in the insurance industry.

15 - Former diplomat Ken Taylor, 81, whose role in the 1979 "Canadian Caper" made him a hero on both sides of the border for helping shelter six U.S. citizens at the height of the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis. He died after a battle with cancer.

21 - Feisty Alberta centenarian Florence Storch, 102, who made headlines for competing in javelin events in her 90s, while helping organize the Canada 55-Plus Games in her home town.

23 - Jimmy Roberts, 75, a five-time Stanley Cup champion with the Montreal Canadiens and an original member of the 1967 expansion St. Louis Blues, after battling cancer.

29 - Anne Wallace, 61, a Kelowna judge who presided at provincial court trials in the city for 10 years, after suffering a brain hemorrhage days earlier.


2 - Romeo Phillion, 76, who confessed to murder and then spent more than three decades behind bars protesting his innocence before he was freed in 2003 and his conviction overturned. He died from chronic lung disease.

10 - Harold Collins, 90, a Newfoundland and Labrador PC MLA who served the riding of Gander from 1967-79.

14 - Cyril Pius MacDonald, 87, a Saskatchewan Liberal MLA who served the riding of Milestone from 1964-1975 and Qu'Appelle-Wolseley from 1975-82.

16 - Bert Olmstead, 89, a Hall of Famer playmaker who won five Stanley Cups. As a Hab, he skated on a line with Elmer Lach and Maurice Richard, later playing left wing with Jean Beliveau and Boom Boom Geoffrion.

18 - Canadian Golf Hall-of-Famer Dan Halldorson, 63, after suffering a stroke two days earlier., He won the 1980 Pensacola Open for his lone PGA Tour title and helped Canada win two World Cup titles, teaming with Jim Nelford in 1980 and Dave Barr in 1985.

19 - Acclaimed singer-songwriter Ron Hynes, 64, Newfoundland and Labrador's "man of a thousand songs," after a brief battle with cancer.

21 - Gil Cardinal, 65, an acclaimed Metis filmmaker, director and writer.

23 - Manmeet Bhullar, 35, an Alberta PC MLA who served the riding of Calgary-Greenway, struck by semi that lost control on an icy highway as he was helping a stranded motorist.

28 - Businessman and environmentalist Maurice Strong, 86, who served as the founding executive director of the United Nations Environment Program.


3 - Former British Columbia premier Bill Bennett, 83, an architect of financial restraint in the province and a signatory to Canada's constitution, following a long fight with Alzheimer's disease.

6 - Evan Leversage, 7, a terminally ill St. George, Ont., boy who galvanized a community to put on an early Christmas parade for him in October complete with artificial snow. Evan suffered from an inoperable brain tumour.

Evan Leversage

10 - Film director and producer Denis Heroux, 75.

19 - Montreal Canadiens Hall of Famer Dickie Moore, 84.

29 - Saskatchewan artist Allen Sapp, 87, whose art depicted life on the reserve. Sapp was an officer of the Order of Canada.

30 - Howard Pawley, 81, a small-town lawyer who rose to become Manitoba's second NDP premier.


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