At one point, John Turner held the highest political post you can reach in Canada. Albeit, for a brief time. But nevertheless, it's still a remarkable achievement that puts him in the history books.

Turner's weeks as Canada's prime minister are probably what he's best known for. But his political career stretched across decades, both before and after his time as prime minister. His life also took several other unique twists.

Passed away in Toronto

ABC reports that a spokesperson for Turner's family confirmed that he died on September 18. He was apparently at home at the time. Reports also indicate that he died in his sleep.

John Turner was born in the United Kingdom. His father and a younger brother died when Turner was a child. Turner's mother, Phyllis, then moved he and his sister to Canada. Phyllis eventually became the first woman to serve as the University of British Columbia's chancellor. She also married again. To Frank Mackenzie Ross, later the lieutenant governor of British Columbia.

Turner graduated from the University of British Columbia and became a track star. He qualifed for the 1948 Canadian Olympic team, but a knee injury kept him from competing. Later, he attended the University of Oxford's Magadalen College on a Rhodes Scholarship. Roger Bannister, later an iconic athlete, was one of his track teammates.

Future Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser was also among his classmates. Turner also attended the University of Paris.

After completing his studies, Turner was romantically involved with Princess Margaret. The younger sister of Queen Elizabeth II. And apparently the relationship became serious.

Margaret later wrote that the two nearly got married.

Turner eventually did get married, to Gellis McCrae Kilgour. Gellis' great uncle, John McCrae, was a Canadian war hero. Her brother, David, became a long-time member of the Canadian Parliament. John and Gellis would have four children.

Served as prime minister in 1984

Turner was a practicing lawyer with the noted firm Stikeman Elliott. He was first elected to the Canadian Parliament from a riding based in Montreal. Early in his career, Turner took a vacation to Barbados. At the same hotel was the former Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, then the leader of the opposition. At one point, a swim took a horrible turn for Diefenbaker. Turner noticed Diefenbaker struggling to stay afloat, jumped in and pulled him to safety.

Under Prime Ministers Lester Pearson and Pierre Trudeau, Turner began taking on more prominent roles. In 1967, he became Canada's minister of justice and attorney general. The following year, he began representing a different riding, one based in Ottawa.

In 1972, he became the minister of finance.

Turner first retired from politics in 1975. He returned to practicing law with the firm McMillan Binch. By 1984, the Liberal Party had become particularly unpopular in Canada. Party Leader and Prime Minister Trudeau opted to step down. Turner re-entered the political arena and was elected as the party's new head. At the time, he did not hold a seat in Parliament. But even still, he became the new prime minister.

He was quickly given a seat from a Vancouver riding. But his premiership last for just days afterward. The 1984 Parliamentary election ended with historically awful results for the Liberals. As noted by Reuters, the campaign included Turner struggling in a televised debate.

Despite the poor showing in the election, Turner was kept on as the Liberal leader.

The party had better results in 1988, but still fell well short of the Progressive Conservatives. Turner stayed on as Liberal leader and the leader of the opposition until 1990. He retired from politics for good in 1993.

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