Remembering Peter C. Newman: A Legacy of Insightful Commentary and Canadian Stories

Renowned journalist and author Peter C. Newman, who was known for his insightful commentary on Canadian politics and business, has passed away at the age of 94.[0] His death was a result of health issues stemming from a stroke he suffered last year, which led to the development of Parkinson's disease.[1] Newman's wife, Alvy Newman, confirmed the news in a heartfelt phone conversation.[1]

Newman was easily recognizable by his trademark sailor's cap and was the author of around two dozen books.[1] He was often referred to as Canada's “most cussed and discussed commentator” by his publisher, HarperCollins.[2] His career included serving as the editor-in-chief for the Toronto Star and Maclean's, where he navigated the intricacies of Canadian politics and business.[1]

The news of Newman's passing was reported by The Canadian Press on September 7, 2023. The report highlighted his significant contributions to Canadian political reporting, particularly his 1963 book “Renegade in Power: The Diefenbaker Years,” which revolutionized the field with its controversial “insiders-tell-all” approach.[2]

Newman's contributions were widely recognized, and he was appointed to the Order of Canada in 1978 and promoted to the rank of companion in 1990.[2] He was celebrated as a chronicler of Canada's past and an interpreter of its present.[1]

His wife, Alvy Newman, expressed her grief over his loss, describing it as a significant loss for Canada.[0] She emphasized that there was no one to fill his shoes and questioned who else could serve as an author and journalist to show Canada to its own people.[0]

Reflecting on her husband's impact, Alvy highlighted his love of the absurd and their shared sense of humor, which brought them together.[1] She remembered him as someone who could find humor in anything.

Paul Wells, a political columnist and former senior writer at Maclean's, praised Newman for his role in shaping the publication into an urgent, weekly news magazine with a global reach.[1] Wells noted that Maclean's, even in later years, still followed the model established by Newman.

Wells also acknowledged Newman's influence on Canadian political authors, stating that his books on “The Canadian Establishment” persuaded everyone that Canadian stories were as important and riveting as stories from anywhere else.[0]

Newman's own story was told in his autobiography, “Here Be Dragons: Telling Tales of People, Passion and Power,” published in 2004.[0] In it, he expressed his desire to gain a voice and be heard, a longing that never left him.[0]

His popular histories and biographies brought to life the people, places, and events that shaped Canada, according to his profile on the Governor General's website.[2]

Newman's passing is a significant loss for Canada, as he leaves behind a legacy of insightful commentary, influential books, and a dedication to showcasing the importance of Canadian stories. His contributions will be remembered and celebrated for years to come.

0. “‘There's no one to fill his shoes': Journalist and author Peter C …”, 9 Sep. 2023,

1. “Renowned Canadian Journalist Peter C. Newman Dies at 94 – West …”, 9 Sep. 2023,

2. “Journalist and author Peter C. Newman dies at age 94 – Canada …”, 9 Sep. 2023,

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