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Memorable Manitobans: Alvin Daniel “Dan” McKenzie (1924-1989)

MP (1973-1974).

Born at Winnipeg on 25 March 1924, he attended Daniel McIntyre Collegiate. During the Second World War, he served in the Royal Canadian Navy (1942-1944) and worked for the Manitoba Telephone System for 30 years before entering politics. He defeated Edmund B. Osler in the 1972 federal general election, being re-elected in 1974, 1979, 1980, and 1984. He took controversial positions, often at odds with his own caucus, on such issues as national bilingualism, adoption of the metric system, and capital punishment for convicted murderers. He advocated for closer ties between Canada and the Caribbean islands of Turks and Caicos. He gained national notoriety when, following a 1982 trip to South Africa, he endorsed apartheid, arguing that South African blacks were intellectually inferior to whites. He did not seek re-election in 1988 and instead moved with his wife to Oakville, Ontario. He died of a heart attack in an Ottawa hotel room on 15 August 1989. He was buried in the Chapel Lawn Memorial Gardens.

Sources:

“Epp laments controversy clouding memory of MP,” Winnipeg Free Press, 17 August 1989, page 11.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 17 August 1989, page 44.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 5 March 2019

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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