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Memorable Manitobans: Charles William Burns (1890-1967)

Physician and surgeon.

Born at Pilot Mound on 17 June 1890, son of William Charles Burns and Isabelle McLeod, he was educated at Oakwood School, Brandon College, University of Manitoba, and Manitoba Medical College, graduating with honours from the latter. In 1914, he enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force and served overseas with the Canadian Army Medical Corps. Following his military discharge, he did postgraduate medical studies in Europe before returning to Winnipeg as the Winnipeg General Hospital's first resident surgeon. He was Professor and Head of the Department of Surgery at the University of Manitoba and Chief Surgeon at the Winnipeg General Hospital (1947-1953). He was given an honorary doctorate by the University of Manitoba (1954). He and wife Helen Gladys MacKay (1896-1995) had two sons: Charles M. Burns and James W. Burns. He was a member of College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba (President, 1936), Manitoba Medical Association, Canadian Society of Clinical Surgeons, Canadian Medical Association, Canadian Cancer Society (Chairman), Manitoba Club, St. Charles Country Club, and Winnipeg Horsemans Club. He died at the Winnipeg General Hospital on 19 May 1967 and was buried in the Garry Memorial Gardens.


Birth registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 22 May 1967, page 25.

Obituary [Helen Gladys Burns], Winnipeg Free Press, 10 November 1995, page 53.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 13 February 2019

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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