John James "Joe" Greene was a Canadian lawyer, politician and Senator, born in Toronto, 24 June 1920, to Richard Leslie Greene and Andree (nee Champagnol). Joe Greene was a farmer and mine worker by trade before he joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in WWII as a Navigator/Observer, and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for bravery. After the war, he earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto under the Department of Veteran Affairs program for returning servicemen. During one summer, Joe moved to Arnprior by invitation of his friend, Ed Houston, and there met Corrine Bedore, affectionately known as "Queenie", the youngest child of Delorme and Catherine Bedore of Arnprior. Corrine and Joe were married in September 1948, and they moved to Toronto to complete her BA, while Joe obtained a law degree from Osgoode Hall in 1950. After graduation, the family settled in Arnprior and Joe established a civil and criminal law practice with Con Mulvihill. Joe, or "J.J" as he would commonly become known, was involved in local politics, as well as various community groups such as the Chamber of Commerce, the Lions Club and the Arnprior Golf Club. As Deputy-Reeve of Arnprior, he introduced a Bylaw for the creation of the Town Crest award in 1957 and chaired the Legion committee to establish and raise funds for the Cenotaph. Queenie and J.J. Greene had five children: Glen, Peter, Jocelyn, Stephanie and Virginia. During the 1950s, J.J. Greene spoke on behalf of the Liberal Candidates at meetings throughout the province of Ontario, culminating in a bid for the leadership of the Ontario Liberal Party in 1959. While not successful, he gained valuable experience during that campaign and had strong local support, so when he ran in 1963 as the federal Liberal candidate for Renfrew South against Conservative incumbent James Baskin; he won. J. J. served as a Member of Parliament for only two years before Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson appointed him to his new cabinet as Minister of Agriculture in 1965. In April 1968, he then became a delegate in the Liberal leadership convention, only dropping off the ballot after the third round and endorsing Pierre Elliott Trudeau on the fourth and final ballot. Prime Minister Trudeau subsequently appointed Greene to his cabinet as Minister of Mines, Energy and Resources. In 1970, during the October Crisis, the Greene Family home on John Street in Arnprior and family were protected. During this time Joe was in poor health and he decided to retire from the cabinet in December of 1971. Prime Minister Trudeau immediately appointed him to the Canadian Senate where he served until his death in October 1978. Though Anglican, his funeral was held in the Arnprior Catholic Church, as there needed to be a space large enough to accommodate the crowd of political dignitaries, friends and family, who came to pay their respects to the Honourable J.J. Greene. Queenie later remarried Richard I. Lafferty. She passed away in 2004. A funeral service was held at the Emmanuel Anglican Church in Arnprior and she is interred at the Albert Street cemetery.
Photographs were deposited by Jocelyn Greene. daughter of J.J. Greene and Corinne Greene (nee Bedore) at the Arnprior District Archives in 2008.
Scope and Content
Eight photographs donated by Jocelyn Greene
J.J. Greene and Wife in Parade c.1965
J.J. Greene and Wife at Agricultural Fair
J.J. Greene at Expo '67 c.1967
J.J. Greene c.1965
J. J. Greene on Parliament Hill c.1965
J. J. Greene at Airport c.1965
J.J. Greene with Campaign Sign c.1965
Greene family at inside Parliament Building
Blog Post: Dougherty, Laurie. "Graveside Stories: Senator J. J. Greene" [Originally posted 11 November 2021].