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Former Quebec Premier Jean Charest, left, and former Defence Minister Gilles Lamontagne share a laugh following Remembrance Day ceremonies Friday Nov. 11, 2005 in Quebec City.

JACQUES BOISSINOT/CP

Former Quebec City mayor and federal cabinet minister Gilles Lamontagne has died at the age of 97.

A statement issued by the city, where Lamontagne was mayor from 1965 to 1977, did not reveal a cause of death.

Following his time as mayor, Lamontagne was elected as a Liberal MP in a byelection in May 1977 and retained his seat in the 1979 and 1980 federal elections.

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Lamontagne served as defence minister in the Pierre Trudeau government and also held positions as acting minister of Veterans Affairs and Postmaster General.

He resigned from federal politics in March 1984 and served as Quebec's lieutenant-governor until 1990.

Lamontagne, who was born in Montreal in 1919, served in the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War and was a prisoner of war in Germany from March 1943 until May 1945. He was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1991.

In a statement posted on the Quebec City website, current mayor Regis Labeaume said he was deeply saddened by the death of one of the city's "great mayors." He said Lamontagne was a man of heart and passion whose departure "leaves a great void in the history of our city."

Funeral details have not yet been announced. Labeaume said flags in Quebec City would fly at half-mast until the funeral.

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