Former B.C. premier dies at age 83

Former British Columbia premier, Bill Bennett, passed away on Dec. 3. Bennett, who suffered from Alzheimer’s, was 83 years old

Former British Columbia premier, Bill Bennett, passed away on Dec. 3. Bennett, who suffered from Alzheimer’s, was 83 years old.

Bennett was elected premier in 1975 and was re-elected in both 1979 and 1983. He remained in the premier’s office until 1986.

News of Bennett’s illness was made public two years ago. A family friend, Charles Fipke, made a $3 million donation to the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health in Bennett’s name.

Premier Christy Clark took to Twitter to remark on Bennett’s passing.

“Saddened to learn of the passing of former Premier Bill Bennett. My thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time,” she posted.

“Premier Bennett did more than anyone to build and modernize our province, he will be remembered as one of our greatest leaders.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also offered his condolences in a statement made on Friday.

“On behalf of all Canadians, Sophie and I offer our deepest condolences to the family and friends and colleagues of former British Columbia premier Bill Bennett,” he said. “He was a very capable and hard-working British Columbian who contributed enormously to his province and to our country. He will be remembered and honoured.”

His political counterparts are remembering Bennett as a visionary, as he was partly responsible for Vancouver’s SkyTrain system, Expo ’86 and the Coquihalla Highway