04/10/2014 07:56 EDT | Updated 04/10/2014 07:59 EDT

Jim Flaherty's Death Draws Heartfelt Tributes, Sad Reaction (TWEETS)

Tributes from across the country poured in for Jim Flaherty, as news spread that the former finance minister had died suddenly of a heart attack at the age of 64.

Here are a few of the remembrances of Flaherty.

"Today is a very sad day for me, for our government and for all of our country. ... Jim will be sorely missed."

— Prime Minister Stephen Harper

"We appreciate that he was so well-supported in his public life by Canadians from coast to coast to coast and by his international colleagues."

— Statement on behalf of Christine Elliott and her triplet sons, John, Galen and Quinn

"A three-time member of Parliament and Canada's finance minister for more than eight years, Mr. Flaherty dedicated himself to serving Canadians in one of government's most demanding roles. That he did so during challenging economic times makes his achievement all the more impressive."

— Statement from Gov. Gen. David Johnston

"As minister of finance, Mr. Flaherty served his country with dedication and conviction, even as he faced mounting health challenges. As both a man and a politician, I will remember him for his pleasant demeanour and strength of character."

— NDP Leader Tom Mulcair

"Jim was a dedicated parliamentarian with a strong social conscience and fundamentally committed to the ideal of public service. He was a proud Canadian and showed continued devotion and commitment to his country over many years. This is a loss to the entire family in the House of Commons."

— Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau

"His leadership and integrity earned him the respect and admiration of Canadians and Americans."

— Bruce Heyman, new U.S. ambassador to Canada

"On the international scene, Jim Flaherty played a pivotal role in the small group of senior decision-makers who quickly and effectively responded to the 2008-09 global financial crisis. His consummate skill and foresight during that difficult period allowed Canada's economy to emerge stronger than ever. As the guiding force of ten federal budgets, Mr. Flaherty never wavered in his abiding commitment to build a better country for all Canadians, a legacy that will ensure his memory as one of Canada's great statesmen."

— statement from Finance Minister Joe Oliver

"Canada has a lost an extraordinary public servant — a man who was respected across our country and around the world. ... On behalf of Canada's business leaders, I want to express our sincere condolences to his family. We are grateful for Jim Flaherty's many contributions to Canada and deeply saddened by his untimely passing."

— John Manley, president and CEO of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives

"He was a rare partisan, able to extend a mischievous twinkle to a rejoinder in Question Period. He was a dedicated public servant and a genuinely kind man."

— Federal Green Party Leader Elizabeth May and MP Bruce Hyer

"It is with deep sadness and a heavy heart that I say goodbye to a very special friend. I love you Jim, I'll miss you."

— Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

"He was a feisty, articulate spirit in this place .... Canada has lost a great Canadian."

— Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne

"He was a man of character; that's a terrible loss for Canada. .... People will remember him as a great finance minister and a great Canadian."

— British Columbia Premier Christy Clark

"I did have a relationship with Jim. It is very unfortunate that he passed. He provided a great public service. I only wish he had more time with his family since his retirement so very recently."

— Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger

"Mr. Flaherty was a dedicated public servant for all Canadians, having served with distinction at the provincial and federal levels. The fact that he was Prime Minister Harper's only finance minister up until his resignation last month is a testament to Mr. Flaherty's talent and dedication. He truly exemplified what it means to be a public servant. My thoughts and prayers go out to Mr. Flaherty's family."

— Alberta Premier Dave Hancock

"You saw the man and you saw the huge heart, you saw what he was made of .... This was an incredible man. This is a guy who will be a legend in Canadian politics, one of the longest-serving, and I would argue, one of the greatest finance ministers we've ever had."

— Ontario Conservative leader Tim Hudak

"He was just a thoroughly decent, hard-working, very professional guy and humble. It strikes me as significant that he didn't whine and cry when he resigned a few weeks ago; he did the classy thing, which Jim always did."

— Ernie Eves, Flaherty's onetime rival for the Ontario Conservative leadership

"I knew him for about 20 years and he was always a charming and thoughtful and good-humoured man. His wife and family have all my sympathy."

— Conrad Black

"Jim was deeply respected — a statesman who navigated the global stage and represented Canada with great distinction. Most importantly, in everything he did, he did it for the people."

— Bill Downe, chief executive officer, BMO Financial Group

"Canada has lost a true leader and statesman who dedicated more than 20 years of public service to making Canada a better and stronger country."

— Donald Guloien, Manulife president and chief executive

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