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Gordon Campbell hugs his mother, Peg Campbell, on stage after he won the May 2005 provincial election. ((CBC))

B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell is mourning the death of his mother, Peg Campbell, who died late last week at the age of 82.

There was no formal announcement until Tuesday because the premier wanted to share the information with his family and his cabinet, the premier's office said.

Peg Campbell was living in a seniors' facility at the time of her death. The cause of death has not been released and a private funeral is expected later this week.

"We just want the media to respect his and the family's privacy," said Mike Morton, a spokesman for the premier.

Peg Campbell rarely appeared in publicwith the premier, but there was no doubt of the profound influence she had on her son's life.

She was widowed in 1961, when her husband, Dr. Charles Gordon Campbell, the assistant dean of medicine at the University of British Columbia, committed suicide. She was left to raise four children. Gordon, at 13, was the eldest son.

The premier has often spoken about how the family moved into a small apartment, how his mother went to work as a school secretary, and how she struggled to pay the bills.

Campbell once told business leaders he can remember how at the end of the month his mother would get a little more anxious about how to make ends meet.

One of Peg Campbell's proudest moments is said to have been onthe evening in May 2001 when her son won the B.C. election and she was asked on stage with him and the rest of the family in the ballroom of a Vancouver hotel.

B.C. Opposition NDP Leader Carole James said Tuesday that she would make no public statement but intended to pass on her condolences to the premier privately.

With files from the Canadian Press