Ottawa, September 25, 2015 – It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of Lieutenant General (Retired) Patrick (Paddy) O’Donnell, CMM, CD. We offer our sincere condolences to Paddy’s family.
Diminutive in physical stature, Paddy was truly a giant in the Canadian Armed Forces family, the Royal Canadian Air Force more specifically, and the Canadian defence industry community. The former Chairman of the Canadian Defence Industries Association, our forerunner organization, Paddy had a long and special relationship with CADSI and the Canadian defence industry.
Paddy began his Air Force career as a navigator, reaching the commanding heights of the Canadian Armed Forces as Vice Chief of the Defence Staff in the early 1990s. He was that rare leader who is remembered as much for his mentorship of younger officers as for his many professional accomplishments both in and out of uniform. A graduate of Queen’s University (Economics), the Royal Air Force Staff College and the NATO Defence College (Rome), Paddy’s incisive, strategic mind, depth of knowledge and sharp wit made a huge impact on our community.
In honour of the contributions Paddy has made over many years of service to his country and to the defence industry, the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries will establish the Patrick J. O’Donnell Mentorship Award, to be awarded to an individual who exhibits the kind of mentoring qualities that Paddy exemplified. This award will be presented annually, beginning in 2016.
Lieutenant General (Retired) Patrick (Paddy) O’Donnell’s obituary can be found by clicking here.