Elias Bichara Khalil Gammal
July 20, 2015
November 18, 1930 – July 20, 2015
Your gentle and giving spirit made home a place for all to celebrate life. Elie, Dad, Geddo, uncle, doctor, anatomy professor. Good Samaritan and man of social justice. Born November 18, 1930, in Cairo, Egypt to Bichara Khalil and Asma from Lebanon. Older brother, Antoine (Mimi) watched over family after their father died early in life. It was a time for love of relatives, language, food of the land, the Mediterranean, and eventually medical school. In 1957 Elias moved to Atlanta, Georgia for a residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at St. Joseph’s Infirmary where he met his beautiful Ellen (nee McMahon) a nurse in training. He then took a one year appointment at Emory University to do cancer research. Elias and Ellen married in 1961 and moved to London, Ontario after Elias accepted an appointment with the Collip Lab (Dr. James Collip, co-discoverer of insulin). Completed a PhD at the University of Western Ontario. Joined the Department of Anatomy (School of Medicine), UWO, joint appointment with Obstetrics & Gynecology at St Joseph’s Hospital. Respected and adored by undergrad and grad students (1966-1996, prof. Emeritus), supported the Murray Barr lectures, instrumental in adapting problem based learning as part of the medical school program and advocate and voice for physician immigrants. Later in his career, taught internationally in Jordan and Dominica. Elias had a spiritual inner peace that touched everyone who met him. He had a deep connection to Newman House and Holy Spirit Parish. His passions were teaching, cancer research, and serving as a french school board trustee. Master of baklawa. Elie loved the choir, camping, The Pinery, dimes, harmonica and his hat. Enduring humor and playfulness. His love will forever be in Ellen-his habibti, Paul (Kate), Christine (JP) Nadia (Max), Sonya (Roe), Marc (Fran). Grandchildren Alexander, Duncan, Claire, Tallulah, Jonas, Nikhil, Yabsira, and the late Sancho. Love and gratefulness to family, friends, neighbours, caregivers and his community. A celebration of Elias’ life will be held Saturday, July 25th at 89 Rollingwood Circle, London, Ontario, N6G 1R1, 1-3 p.m. Words are not enough to thank Dr. Patel, Dr. Parent, Dr. McAllister, the palliative care team and Greg. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to VON Canada, Pancreatic Cancer Canada or the Alzheimer Society.
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