Passing of Rita MacNeil

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

It is with great sadness that Mrs. Grant and I learned of the passing of Nova Scotia cultural icon, Rita MacNeil, CM, ONS.

Ms. MacNeil was an influential singer, songwriter, author and performer who enriched the cultural landscape of Nova Scotia.  Mrs. Grant and I have fond memories of attending performances by Ms. MacNeil in the early days of her career in North Sydney.  Her songs of hardship and hope were rooted in her native Cape Breton but their themes were universal and appealed to audiences around the world.

In honour of her many achievements and contributions to the Atlantic Canadian music industry, Ms. MacNeil was appointed to the Order of Canada in 1992 and was awarded the Order of Nova Scotia in 2005.

Mrs. Grant and I would like to extend our sincere sympathies Ms. MacNeil’s family, friends and to the community of Big Pond, Cape Breton.  Nova Scotia has lost a beloved cultural ambassador and she will be missed.

Brigadier-General The Hon. J.J. Grant, CMM, ONS, CD (Ret’d)
Lieutenant Governor