|Margaret Trudeau with one-week old Michel
Margaret Trudeau is, without a doubt, the most famous Canadian political
wife. Married at 22 to a bachelor prime minister almost
30 years her senior, she instantly captivated the attention of the press
and public. Although the age difference was huge, the marriage seemed to
fit the prime minister and the times. The young flower-child and the dapper older man
seemed deeply in love in a fairy-tale romance.
But the adjustment from freedom
to the strictures of political wifedom proved difficult. Margaret was bored
and restless, unhappy with the duties of hosting dinners and tea parties.
Margaret had trouble fitting in in the tight-laced government town. Although
they had three children in quick succession, the free-spirited Margaret and
the man whose motto was "reason over passion" were doomed from
On their sixth anniversary, they decided on a temporary separation.
But soon after, the rocky marriage became front-page news: Margaret was
photographed at a Rolling Stones concert. The media said she went to the
concert, then spent the night and the next day partying with the band. There
were rumours of sex, drugs, and rock and roll.
Margaret later said it wasn't at all the way the media played it, but there
was no repairing her broken reputation. She spent time partying, and living
up to her wild reputation, trying various careers, including photography
and acting. They divorced in 1984, Pierre's last year in office.
remarried, to a real estate developer in Ottawa, and had two more children.
They also later divorced. Margaret was at Pierre's bedside when he died in 2000.
Alexandre (Sacha), and Michel (Micha) Trudeau
The sons of Margaret and Pierre
were famous the moment they were born. But after his retirement from politics
in 1984, Pierre raised them privately in Montreal.
Justin Trudeau is a well-known
Canadian figure. He
captivated the nation with his touching eulogy to his father, who died in 2000.
Formerly a teacher, he campaigns for avalanche safety, and promotes the youth
Sacha is a respected journalist, covering international
news for Canadian media. He produced a documentary, based on his experience
as an embedded journalist during the 2003 war in Iraq.
The youngest son Michel (or Micha, as the family called him) was
killed in an avalanche in 1998 at the age of 23.
Click below for a look at some of the better-known family members of our
most recent PMs: