Harriet (Hallie) J. Sloan, C.M., C.D., R.N. (1917- 2016)


Hallie was born in Winnipeg on January 21, 1917 and graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital in 1940. Ending her career with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, Hallie had a long military history starting with 8th Canadian General Hospital (Saskatchewan Unit), and continuing with postings overseas in Normandy, Belgium and Holland. Following the war Hallie returned to Canada and was one of 30 nurses invited to stay on in the military, where she was in charge of basic training of medical assistants and later, as numbers increased, of the new nursing personnel. Hallie loved teaching and was ahead of her time in advocating for male nurses in the military.

In 1964, Hallie was promoted to Lt-Colonel and appointed Matron-in-Chief, Canadian Medical Services, an appointment she held until her retirement in 1968. During much of Hallie’s career, she was involved with changes in nursing, most particularly military nursing. She saw the Canadian military nursing force grow from 30 to almost 500 nurses. For many of those nurses, she provided their orientation and training. Her ability to change the system, her commitment to veterans, and her ability to bridge the gap between military and civilian nurses is an inspiration.

Hallie’s professional nursing career also included work with the Canadian Nurses Association serving as director of the Nursing Abroad Program and the National Nursing Administration Program which included organizing the 1969 International Council of Nursing congress in Montreal. Hallie also worked with the Canadian Nurses Foundation, and became a committed fundraiser and donor to support the education of military nurses.

Military honours include the 1939-45 Star, the France and Germany Star, NATO medal, as well as the 25th and the 50th Anniversary Medals. In 2004, Hallie received the Order of Canada for her outstanding leadership, advancing military nursing and patient care.

Hallie passed away in Ottawa on January 21, 2016, her 99th birthday. We salute Hallie for her leadership her tenacity, her love of life, and her contributions to nursing.  Hallie touched everyone she met, and she will always hold a special place in all our lives.  Rest in peace Hallie and hope you continue to see your bright, clear and blue prairie sky, which you loved so dearly.

For Hallie’s obituary and funeral details please click here.