Aline Chretien, wife and trusted adviser of former PM, dead at 84
Aline Chretien, the wife and trusted adviser of former prime minister Jean Chretien, has died at 84.
A spokesman for the Chretien family says she died at her home in Shawinigan, Que., on Saturday morning surrounded by family. A cause of death was not specified.
Bruce Hartley says only a private ceremony is being planned for now because of restrictions associated with COVID-19, with a public memorial planned for sometime in the future.
Aline Chretien grew up in a blue-collar family, just a few blocks away from her future husband in the Quebec pulp-and-paper town of Shawinigan, where they met during a chance encounter on a bus.
While she rarely spoke publicly, Aline Chretien was a constant presence at Jean Chretien's side and a major influence on him during his four-decade political career.
The couple had just marked their 63rd wedding anniversary on Thursday.
*GREG KELLEY, Liberal MNA for Jacques-Cartier, and Official Opposition Critic for Relations with English-Speaking Quebecers