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Brian Mulroney lying in state in Ottawa as Canadians pay their respects to the former prime minister, wife and children

PM Trudeau, dignitaries and family members pay tribute to the former Conservative leader, who 'stood the test of history' for Canada

Canadians are expected to come out and pay their last respects to Brian Mulroney, Canada's 18th prime minister, as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald Building in Ottawa March 19 and 20.

Mulroney died in a Palm Beach, Fl., hospital on Feb. 29 at the age of 84. His death was met with a wave of reaction from politicians and members of the public. The former PM is survived by his wife, Mila Mulroney, and their four children.

A funeral cortege carried Mulroney's body to the Sir John A. Macdonald Building on Tuesday morning, where Governor General Mary Simon and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed their sympathies to the Mulroney family. Members of the public will be able to visit and pay their respects from 12:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. on March 19, and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on March 20.

Brian Mulroney's funeral ceremony is set to take place on Saturday, March 23, at 11 a.m., at Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal. Prior to the ceremony, a funeral cortege — including a Royal Canadian Mounted Police mounted escort, a Canadian Armed Forces escort and guard of honour, the Royal Canadian Air Force Band, and RCMP pallbearers — will make its way to the Notre-Dame Basilica.

Follow our live blog below for images, tributes and the latest details from the tribute to Mulroney.

LIVE COVERAGE IS OVER13 updates
  • How to watch former PM Brian Mulroney's funeral

    The vigil sentinels as seen around the casket of former prime minster Brian Mulroney, Tuesday, March 19, 2024 in Ottawa.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
    The vigil sentinels as seen around the casket of former prime minster Brian Mulroney, Tuesday, March 19, 2024 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

    The funeral ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 23, 2024, at the Notre-Dame Basilica (110 Notre-Dame Street West) in Montreal.

    Yahoo News Canada will broadcast live coverage of the funeral from Global News here.

    Trudeau, Gretzky to deliver eulogy: What we know about the event

    Prior to the ceremony, a funeral cortege, including a Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) mounted escort, a Canadian Armed Forces escort and guard of honour, the Royal Canadian Air Force Band, RCMP pallbearers, and honorary pallbearers, will make its way to the Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal.

    The ceremony will feature religious components led by His Grace Christian Lépine, Archbishop of Montreal, and The Very Reverend Miguel Castellanos, PSS, rector of Notre-Dame Basilica.

    Eulogies will be offered by Caroline Mulroney, the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, Pierre Karl Péladeau, Wayne Gretzky, James Baker and Jean Charest.

    Guests invited to the ceremony will include family, friends, current and former government representatives and dignitaries, as well as representatives of organizations to which the Right Honourable Brian Mulroney had a close connection.

  • Canadians mourn former prime minister Brian Mulroney

    Canadians took a moment out of their day either virtually or in-person on Tuesday to offer their condolences to Brian Mulroney's family and take in a moment in front of the former prime minister's flag-draped casket.

    Members of the public line up outside to pay their respects to former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald Building, across from Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
    Members of the public line up outside to pay their respects to former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald Building, across from Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
    People pay their respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool
    People pay their respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool
    People greet members of the Mulroney family as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool
    People greet members of the Mulroney family as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool
    Members of the public pay their respects at the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald Building, across from Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
    Members of the public pay their respects at the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald Building, across from Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
  • How did former PM Brian Mulroney die?

    Former prime minister Brian Mulroney poses for a photo after an interview in Montreal, Tuesday, October 25, 2022. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is dead at 84. His family announced late Thursday that the former Tory leader died peacefully, surrounded by loved ones. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
    Former prime minister Brian Mulroney poses for a photo after an interview in Montreal, Tuesday, October 25, 2022. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is dead at 84. His family announced late Thursday that the former Tory leader died peacefully, surrounded by loved ones. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

    While no official cause of death has been released, a family spokesman said Mulroney died in a Palm Beach, Florida hospital, where he's been since a recent fall. Mulroney was a long-time seasonal resident of the state. He was surrounded by family upon his passing.

    In April, the former prime minister was also treated for prostate cancer. His daughter, Caroline, said in August that following cancer treatment, and also a heart procedure, his health was improving.

  • Who is who in the Mulroney family?

    Governor General Mary Simon, and her husband Whit Fraser, left, pay their respects to Mila Mulroney and Mulroney family members as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    Governor General Mary Simon, and her husband Whit Fraser, left, pay their respects to Mila Mulroney and Mulroney family members as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    Brian Mulroney's widow Mila Mulroney greets Governor General Mary Simon and her husband Whit Fraser. Born in Yugoslavia in 1953, Mila Mulroney moved to Canada along with her family in 1958. She and Brian Mulroney got married on May 26, 1973 and had four children. Seen in the picture above are Caroline, Nicholas, Ben and Mark Mulroney.

    Caroline, an acclaimed lawyer and politician currently serves as MPP for York-Simcoe riding.

    As for Nicholas and Mark, they both ventured into the business world.

    Ben, the eldest, is an acclaimed Canadian producer and former television host.

  • Lying in state vs. lying in repose: Explainer

    Former prime minister Brian Mulroney's body is lying in state on March 19 and 20th in Ottawa before his body will lie in repose at Saint Patrick’s Basilica in Montreal on March 21 and 22 ahead of his state funeral on Saturday.

    What does it mean when a leader lies in state and how is it different from lying in repose?

    Dignitaries line up to pay their respects to former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    Dignitaries line up to pay their respects to former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    Lying in state

    The Canadian government defines lying in state as "a term used to describe the ceremonial tradition whereby the remains of the deceased rest on view, with a vigil, to allow official dignitaries as well as members of the public to pay their final respects."

    In Canada, this usually takes place on Parliament Hill, where officials and members of the public file past a flag-draped casket and flanked by honour guard.

    There is no determination of length that a leader can lie in state, and is determined on a case-by-case basis.

    The last time a Canadian dignitary lay in state in Ottawa was 2011, when thousands waited in line for hours to commemorate NDP leader Jack Layton.

    Lying in repose

    In Canada, when deceased governors general and prime ministers lie anywhere outside of the Hall of Honour on Parliament Hill, they lie in repose.

  • Dignitaries descend on Ottawa to express sympathies to Brian Mulroney's family

    Dignitaries parade through the Parliamentary precinct where Mulroney's body will lie in state for the next day-and-a-half to offer their condolences to the family and pay their final respects.

    Gov. Gen. Mary Simon

    Governor General Mary Simon pays her respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    Governor General Mary Simon pays her respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    Former prime minister Joe Clark and his wife Maureen McTeer

    Former prime minister Joe Clark and his wife Maureen McTeer pay their respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool
    Former prime minister Joe Clark and his wife Maureen McTeer pay their respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool

    Former Gov. Gen. Michaelle Jean

    Former governor general Michaelle Jean pays her respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    Former governor general Michaelle Jean pays her respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    A priest pays his final respects

    A priest pays his respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool
    A priest pays his respects as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Blair Gable-Pool

    House Speaker Greg Fergus offers condolences to the Mulroney family

    House Speaker Greg Fergus talks with members of the Mulroney family as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
    House Speaker Greg Fergus talks with members of the Mulroney family as former prime minister Brian Mulroney lies in state in the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

    Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre and his wife Anaida

    Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre and his wife Anaida payrespects at the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre and his wife Anaida payrespects at the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh

    NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh pays his respects at the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh pays his respects at the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney as he lies in state at the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
  • Mulroney's widow, children, hear glowing tributes from politicians at House of Commons on Monday

    Mulroney family members take part in a moment of silence prior to tributes to the late prime minister Brian Mulroney in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, March 18, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
    Mulroney family members take part in a moment of silence prior to tributes to the late prime minister Brian Mulroney in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, March 18, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    Members of Parliament shared stories and tributes as the Mulroney family attended the House of Commons on Monday.

    Trudeau took an opportunity to reminisce about one of his last encounters with Mulroney when they toured Mulroney Hall last fall, as reported by CBC.

    "He wouldn't let himself succumb to temporary pressure. He was motivated by service. And those things, those big things, have stood the test of history four decades and counting," Trudeau said.

    Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre touched on the former leader's humble beginnings.

    "I was just becoming aware there was such a thing as prime minister when he had that job. And like millions of young people from similar backgrounds, we looked to him and said — if the Irish son of a working-class electrician from a mill town can rise to become prime minister, then in this country, anyone from anywhere can do anything," Poilievre said.

  • Trudeau offers his condolences to the Mulroney family

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is one of the dignitaries paying their respects to the Mulroney family before members of the public have their opportunity to say farewell to Canada's 18th prime minister.

    Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets the family of late former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, ahead of his Montreal funeral, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada March 19, 2024.  REUTERS/Blair Gable/Pool
    Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets the family of late former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, ahead of his Montreal funeral, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada March 19, 2024. REUTERS/Blair Gable/Pool
  • Mulroney's casket is carried into Sir John A. Macdonald building

    A honour guard carries the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney into the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
    A honour guard carries the casket of former prime minister Brian Mulroney into the Sir John A. Macdonald building opposite Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
  • Ben Mulroney reflects on the legacy of his father Brian Mulroney

    Brian Mulroney's son Ben spoke with the hosts of The Morning Show to reflect on memories of the late prime minister as a father.

    "We are having a tough go.. You are OK until you are not OK," Mulroney said.

  • Vote: What do you think of Brian Mulroney's leadership and legacy?

    FILE - Brian Mulroney, the former prime minister of Canada, listens during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Canada-U.S.-Mexico relationship, Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Mulroney has died at the age of 84, his daughter Caroline Mulroney posted on social media, Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

    As the Canadian Press obituary for Brian Mulroney put it, the former prime minister leaves a divisive legacy, with many Canadians either loving or hating him.

    "Canadians loved him: In 1984, they handed the youthful charmer a blank cheque and the largest majority mandate in history so he could change the country.

    "Canadians hated him: When he announced his departure from politics in 1993, his charm was dismissed as blarney, his youth faded into a lugubrious middle-age."

    Mulroney entered the office of prime minister amid a massive wave of public support. By the time he left office in 1993, however, Mulroney held the lowest approval rating in the history of polling.

  • Brian Mulroney's life and legacy in photos

    Remembered as one of Canada's most influential and controversial politicians, here are just a few monumental snapshots of Brian Mulroney's life.

    Brian Mulroney stretches through a bus window  to reach potential voters in Wabush, NF,  on his last stop of the federal campaign, Sept 2, 1984.  Two days later his Progessive Conservative party won the election and he became Prime Minister. (CP PHOTO/Fred Chartrand)
    Brian Mulroney stretches through a bus window to reach potential voters in Wabush, NF, on his last stop of the federal campaign, Sept 2, 1984. Two days later his Progessive Conservative party won the election and he became Prime Minister. (CP PHOTO/Fred Chartrand)
    Brian Mulroney and Mila waving from the stage on election night Sept. 4, 1984. (CP PHOTO/stf)
    Brian Mulroney and Mila waving from the stage on election night Sept. 4, 1984. (CP PHOTO/stf)
    Queen Elizabeth II toasts with Prime Minister Brian Mulroney in Quebec City, Oct. 23, 1987. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is dead at 84. His family announced late Thursday that the former Tory leader died peacefully, surrounded by loved ones. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ron Poling
    Queen Elizabeth II toasts with Prime Minister Brian Mulroney in Quebec City, Oct. 23, 1987. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is dead at 84. His family announced late Thursday that the former Tory leader died peacefully, surrounded by loved ones. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ron Poling
    Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and U.S. President George Bush toss out the first pitches at the Toronto Blue Jays home opener against the Texas Rangers at the SkyDome in Toronto on April 10, 1990. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is dead at 84. His family announced late Thursday that the former Tory leader died peacefully, surrounded by loved ones. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
    Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, supported by his wife Mila, jokes with the media travelling on his campaign plane Nov. 22, 1988 during the flight home to Ottawa from Baie Comeau. Mulroney wore the sign that said he would not run in 1999, a response to questions earlier in the day regarding his intentions for a third term of office.
    Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, supported by his wife Mila, jokes with the media travelling on his campaign plane Nov. 22, 1988 during the flight home to Ottawa from Baie Comeau. Mulroney wore the sign that said he would not run in 1999, a response to questions earlier in the day regarding his intentions for a third term of office.
    HiRes (SHER1) SHERBROOKE, Quebec, Sept 28--RIPS PAPER--Prime Minister Brian Mulroney holds up a piece of paper he had torn during a speech in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Monday.  Mulroney was demonstrating that a No vote on the referendum would rip apart the 31 points Quebec got in the Charlottetown agreement.  (CP PHOTO) 1992 (stf-Fred Chartrand)
    HiRes (SHER1) SHERBROOKE, Quebec, Sept 28--RIPS PAPER--Prime Minister Brian Mulroney holds up a piece of paper he had torn during a speech in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Monday. Mulroney was demonstrating that a No vote on the referendum would rip apart the 31 points Quebec got in the Charlottetown agreement. (CP PHOTO) 1992 (stf-Fred Chartrand)
    South African anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela raises his arms as he is acknowledged by the Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and other members of Parliament in Ottawa, June 18, 1990. (CP PHOTO/Fred Chartrand)
    South African anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela raises his arms as he is acknowledged by the Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and other members of Parliament in Ottawa, June 18, 1990. (CP PHOTO/Fred Chartrand)
    (OTTX 103) OTTAWA, Oct. 22--Former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney laughs while Governor General Romeo LeBlanc puts the Order of Canada around his neck during an Investiture ceremony in Ottawa Thursday.(CP PHOTO) 1998 (stf-Tom Hanson)th
    (OTTX 103) OTTAWA, Oct. 22--Former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney laughs while Governor General Romeo LeBlanc puts the Order of Canada around his neck during an Investiture ceremony in Ottawa Thursday.(CP PHOTO) 1998 (stf-Tom Hanson)th
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, right, is offered a seat at the desk by former prime minister Brian Mulroney while touring a replica of Mr. Mulroney's former parliamentary office in Mulroney Hall at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, N.S. on Monday, June 19, 2023. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is dead at 84. His family announced late Thursday that the former Tory leader died peacefully, surrounded by loved ones. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese