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George Porteous

The Hon George Porteous, MBE, CM, DD (1903-1977) was Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, Canada from 1976 to 1977.

George Porteous worked for the YMCA and became an Army physical education instructor. At the outbreak of World War II he went with the 1st Canadian Division to England as a YMCA Auxiliary Service officer, returning later on to Canada to train others.

In 1941 Porteous was sent with the Winnipeg Grenadiers to Hong Kong, to reinforce the British garrison there. They arrived just in time to be overwhelmed by invading Japanese forces, and Porteous was to spend a total of 44 months in one of their notorious prisoner of war camps. In due course he was awarded the distinction MBE, Member of the British Empire.

He was also awarded the Order of Canada in 1974 for dedication to community affairs, and appointed to be Lieutenant-Governor of Saskatchewan, the Queen’s representative, in February 1976, thus becoming that Province’s 14th Lieutenant Governor.

An interesting insight into his character is the fact that from 1960 until his death in 1977 Porteous was an enthusiastic personal participant in the testing of nicotinic acid for the treatment of severe arthritis and insomnia that had plagued him as a result of his wartime imprisonment. He supported the use of this vitamin for all Canadian and US ex-prisoners of war suffering from similar symptoms.