Pat Nixon (top)

Parksville man discusses scene around some of the baby pictures he took of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

In Ottawa on an official visit in 1971, U.S. President Richard Nixon predicted Justin Trudeau would some day be prime minister

A local resident was taking pictures the day of Richard Nixon’s now famous quote about Justin Trudeau.

At a gala dinner in April, 1971, then U.S. President Richard Nixon focused on the prime minister’s son: “Tonight we’ll dispense with the formalities. I’d like to toast the future prime minister of Canada: to Justin Pierre Trudeau.”

At the time Onnig Cavoukian, known professionally as Cavouk, was a 26-year-old portrait photographer working for the family business.

“The president was addressing our parliament, while we took photos of Mrs. Nixon, with Margaret and Norah Michener at the Trudeau residence,” said Cavoukian who is now semi-retired in Parksville.

He said he “snapped the pictures of Maggie, Mrs. Trudeau, when I caught them relaxing with the other women.”

Onnig had resisted the Cavouk photo dynasty, but by 1971 he was well into a career that would see him shoot celebrities and more than 100 world leaders including the Shah of Iran, Indira Ghandi, Queen Elizabeth and Pope Paul VI.

The future Canadian prime minister was a well behaved four-month-old at the time and didn’t leave a big impression, but when he was hired again a couple years later he said “I remember Justin as a healthy, bubbly two-year-old.”

He took the original photos as Justin and young mom Margaret waited with the president’s wife Pat Nixon and the Governor General’s wife Norah Michener. A Cavouk portrait of Governor General Roland Michener was later used as a Canadian stamp.

Cavoukian realizes the historical connection, but brushes it off as one of many in his storied career. He said a local TV producer is working on getting him to Ottawa to try and recreate the family photos with the second generation of Trudeaus.

Just Posted

Group raising money to stop Parksville supportive housing project

GoFundMe page has $15.2 K for lawyer fees raised since July 8

Hot stretch leaving Parksville Qualicum Beach homeless in need

Manna looks for water, sunscreen donations

District 69 athletes to compete at BC Summer Games

Opening ceremony aims to inspire, delight and entertain

Cycle of Life Tour seeks donations for hospice society

Riders will cycle 200 km to help keep hospice care in motion

Regional trails closed due to fire hazard

The Regional District of Nanaimo is closing trails within its jurisdictions effective… Continue reading

BC Games: Opening Ceremony from Laketown Ranch

Hundreds of athletes and thousands of volunteers, coaches, parents and officials

World’s translators push back on forcing Trump interpreter to testify

Democrats had asked translator to testify about Trump’s lengthy conversation with Putin in Helsinki

No decision on B.C. school stabbing suspect’s mental fitness for trial

The BC Review Board could not determine whether Gabriel Klein, 21, is fit to stand trial

Canadian government threatens to retaliate if Trump imposes auto tariffs

U.S president had suggested that auto imports pose a national security risk to the U.S.

Wildfire evacuation order forces bride to search for new wedding venue

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards is under an order due to the Mount Eneas wildfire south of Peachland

Recent online kitten abuse video raises serious social media questions

UBC and UFV profs weigh in on the subject of online sharing, shaming, and our digital landscape

UPDATED: ICBC fights back against claims that it’s ‘ripping off’ B.C. RV drivers

Canadian Taxpayers Federation is urging the provincial government to open up ICBC to competition

Summerland issues State of Local Emergency in response to wildfire

Two homes under evacuation order; evacuation alert remains in place as result of wildfire

Most Read