Sask. Lt.-Gov. dead after battle with cancer

W. Thomas Molloy, Saskatchewan's lieutenant-governor, has died after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

W. Thomas Molloy was 78

Saskatchewan Lt.-Gov. W. Thomas Molloy died Tuesday after a battle with pancreatic cancer. (Government of Saskatchewan)

W. Thomas Molloy, Saskatchewan's lieutenant-governor, died Tuesday after a battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 78.

"[Molloy] had a lasting impact on our province and nation in his five decades of dedicated service," Premier Scott Moe said in a statement about Molloy's death released Tuesday morning. 

"His many contributions to the betterment of our country leaves a tremendous legacy that I hope provides his family with some comfort in this time of grief."

Molloy was Saskatchewan's 22nd lieutenant-governor. He was installed on Mar. 21, 2018. In May 2019, the province announced Molloy would step away from his duties to undergo cancer treatment.

Robert Richards, Chief Justice of Saskatchewan, oversaw the constitutional and ceremonial duties of the position for the last two months.

Molloy, a Saskatoon lawyer, was an author and former chancellor of the University of Saskatchewan.

He negotiated Indigenous land claims on behalf of the federal government and the governments of British Columbia, Ontario and Saskatchewan. 

When he was installed, Molloy said one of his most memorable negotiating moments includes the Nisga'a Treaty, the first formal treaty signed by a First Nation in British Columbia.

Lt.-Gov. Thomas Molloy inspects the troops after being installed as Saskatchewan's lieutenant-governor at the Legislative Building in Regina on Wednesday, March 21, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Molloy was invested into the Order of Canada as an officer in 1996 and received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit in 2012. He received the 2018 Ramon John Hnatyshyn Award for Law from the Canadian Bar Association.

Books of condolence will be placed at Government House, the Legislative Building and Saskatoon City Hall on Wednesday.

Flags on all provincial government buildings will be at half-mast until sunset on the day of Molloy's funeral or memorial service. Details about a memorial service have not been released.

Former premier remembers lifelong friend

Former Saskatchewan Premier Roy Romanow met Molloy at the University of Saskatchewan when they were both on the Student Representative Council.

"He always had an interest in the underdog and those in our society who needed assistance," Romanow said.

Romanow said he and Molloy shared long, quiet dinners in Saskatoon over the years.

"The conversations were long because we listened to each other".

Romanow said their friendship "withstood the test of time" despite stretches when they couldn't connect because of busy work schedules.

"I think that we liked each other. We were of different political persuasions — there's no doubt about that — but it never got in the way of our relationship and our friendship."

With files by Adam Hunter


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