Joseph Philippe Pierre Yves Elliott Trudeau, (; French: [tʁydo]; October 18, 1919 – September 28, 2000), often referred to by the initials PET, was a Canadian statesman who served as the 15th Prime Minister of Canada (1968–1979 and 1980–1984). He is the third longest-serving Prime Minister in Canadian history (behind William Lyon Mackenzie King and John A. Macdonald), having served for 15 years, 164 days.
Trudeau rose to prominence as a lawyer, intellectual, and activist in Quebec politics. In the 1960s he entered federal politics by joining the Liberal Party of Canada. He was appointed as Lester B. Pearson's Parliamentary Secretary and later became his Minister of Justice. Trudeau became a media sensation, inspiring "Trudeaumania", and took charge of the Liberals in 1968. From the late 1960s until the mid-1980s, his personality dominated the political scene to an extent never before seen in Canadian political life. Despite his personal motto, "Reason before passion", his personality and political career aroused polarizing reactions throughout Canada.
Admirers praise the force of Trudeau's intellect and salute his political acumen in preserving national unity against the Quebec sovereignty movement, suppressing a terrorist crisis, fostering a pan-Canadian identity, and in achieving sweeping institutional reform, including the implementation of official bilingualism, patriation of the Constitution, and the establishment of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Critics accuse him of arrogance, of economic mismanagement, and of unduly centralizing Canadian decision-making to the detriment of Quebec's culture and the economy of the Prairies. He retired from politics in 1984, and John Turner succeeded him.
His eldest son, Justin Trudeau, became the 23rd and current Prime Minister as a result of the 2015 federal election and is the first prime minister of Canada to be related to a former prime minister.
He is also known as Pierre Elliott Trudeau and Joseph Philippe Pierre Yves Elliott Trudeau.
Pierre Elliott Trudeau died on September 28, 2000, and was buried in the Trudeau family crypt, St-Rémi-de-Napierville Cemetery, Saint-Rémi, Quebec. His body lay in state in the Hall of Honour in Parliament Hill's Centre Block to allow Canadians to pay their last respects. Several world politicians, including former US President Jimmy Carter and Fidel Castro, attended the funeral. His son Justin delivered the eulogy during the state funeral which led to widespread speculation in the media that a career in politics was in his future. Eventually, Justin did enter politics, was elected to the House of Commons in late 2008, became the leader of the federal Liberal Party in April 2013, and was elected Prime Minister of Canada on October 19, 2015—the first time a father and his son have become prime ministers in Canada.