04/11/2014 15:31 EDT | Updated 06/11/2014 05:59 EDT

Jim Flaherty to have state funeral Wednesday

Former finance minister Jim Flaherty will get a state funeral next Wednesday.

The honour is normally reserved for sitting ministers, but the prime minister can offer the distinction to the families of eminent Canadians.

Jack Layton, the late NDP leader who was the head of the Official Opposition when he died in August 2011, was given a state funeral and lying-in-state in Parliament Hill's hall of honour.

Flaherty died of a heart attack Thursday. Colleagues, including opposition MPs, are remembering him as a generous friend who could spar heatedly with someone in Parliament and later laugh over a drink outside the House of Commons.