MHS Smarty Party: 20 October 2022

Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: David Murray Peden (1923-2022)

Lawyer, civil servant, author.

Born at Winnipeg on 19 October 1923, much of his childhood was spent at Portage la Prairie where he attended the Portage Collegiate Institute. In 1940, his family returned to Winnipeg and he graduated from Gordon Bell High School. He enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force, trained as a pilot, and was sent overseas in November 1942. He flew bombing missions with the RAF 214 Squadron doing secret radar-countermeasures work. He was subsequently awarded a Distinguished Flying Cross. He returned to Canada in July 1945.

Following his military discharge, he received a BA degree from United College (1948) and a law degree from the Manitoba School School (1952). He worked in the Manitoba Attorney-General’s office for three years then, in 1955, joined the law firm of Greenberg, Arpin and Rich. He was appointed counsel to the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg (1960) and, the following year, rejoined the provincial government as Assistant Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs. He was later Deputy Minister of Public Utilities. He was made a Queen’s Counsel (1965). In 1968, he became the first Chairman of the newly-formed Securities Commission, holding the position until retirement in 1988.

In 1949, he married Jean Duncan Barker (1927-2018, daughter of Philip Barker) and they had three children. He wrote three books: Hearken to the Evidence (1983), a description of the criminal justice system in the 1950s, Fall of an Arrow (1987) about the Avro Arrow fighter aircraft, and A Thousand Shall Fall (1988) about his wartime experiences. He was a keen duck hunter, fisherman, and skeet shooter. He played bagpipes with the Cameron Highlanders Pipe Band and later taught with the Lord Selkirk Boy Scout Pipe Band.

He died at Winnipeg on 6 January 2022.

Sources:

Obituary [Jean D. Peden], Winnipeg Free Press, 1 December 2018.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 8 January 2022.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 8 January 2022

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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