Canadian Icon Donald Sutherland dies at 88, described commemorative stamp as ‘everything’

Canadian actor Donald Sutherland, who was “so touched” by the release of a Canada Post stamp honouring him that he asked Canadians to send him postcards featuring the stamp, died on June 20. He was 88.

“When they showed me this stamp, I felt that everything had come together,” Sutherland told Tom Power, host of CBC Radio’s Q, in December. “I really wished that [my mother] could have seen me. You know, when you’re 88 years old — very nearly 89 — it means a lot, a stamp, because we grew up writing letters…. The stamp for me is everything, just everything!”

Reflecting on his life and career, the Canadian icon told Power the stamp is the thing he’s most proud of. “That goes everywhere in this country and abroad,” said Sutherland. “That puts me on letters. They’d go everywhere. I love it. I am so touched by it.”

Issued on Oct. 19, 2023, the Canada Post movie-poster-inspired stamp features an image of the actor’s profile, with several of his movie titles in English and French. According to CBC, after his interview with Power, the Canadian actor invited the CBC audience to send him a postcard using his stamp.

Canadians responded overwhelmingly.

“While many honourees encourage Canadians to buy their stamps, this is, to our knowledge, the first time an honouree has asked Canadians to write to them personally,” Phil Rogers of Canada Post told Canadian Stamp News on Feb. 1. “Mr. Sutherland estimated having received over a thousand letters and postcards so far.”

Sutherland’s son, Kiefer, confirmed his father’s death on Thursday.

“With a heavy heart, I tell you that my father, Donald Sutherland, has passed away,” read the post on X. “I personally think one of the most important actors in the history of film. Never daunted by a role, good, bad or ugly. He loved what he did and did what he loved, and one can never ask for more than that.

“A life well lived.”

1 Comment

  • kayson48 says:

    I am honored to have been one of his respondents and sincerely hope that this action made his fading days happier and more fulfilled. A deserving gentleman and one who made Canadians proud of their heritage.

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