MD, PhD, FRCP(C), FACP
January 8, 1934 – Transcona, Manitoba
May 8, 2019 – Calgary, Alberta
Keith MacCannell, beloved husband and father, doctor, scientist, professor, and mentor, passed away on May 8, 2019, at the age of 85. Keith’s life was defined by his love for those close to him and his tremendous work ethic.
Brilliant, serious, and mischievous, Keith excelled as a student, professional, and academic. He was born to a railway family in Transcona, Manitoba, and worked summers in a rail yard and airport. As a high school student, he won the Governor General’s academic medal for Manitoba. He earned his medical degree in 1958 as the gold medalist in his class, and a PhD in pharmacology in 1963.
As a young man, Keith completed a medical residency and fellowship in Canada and the US, before he left a faculty position in Vancouver to help found Calgary’s medical school in 1969. Demonstrating his pioneering spirit and sense of adventure, he joined the U of C in the newly founded Faculty of Medicine, as Chairman of the Department of Pharmacology & Therapeutics and Associate Dean of Research. Always seeking new challenges and knowledge, he completed a second fellowship, in gastroenterology, at the age of 50. He later served as Calgary’s Chief of Gastroenterology from 1996 to 2000.
Shortly after moving to Calgary, he met his wife, Linda Ross MacCannell (née Mapel; married 1972), with whom he raised a family of three boys: Duncan, Keith Andrew, and Donald. He is also survived by three granddaughters whom he adored: Finnleigh, Ellie, and Rowan, with a fourth expected in August.
In rare moments of free time, Keith enjoyed reading, woodworking, and travel. Together, Linda and Keith were founding board members of the Alberta Science Centre Society, working together in their passion for science education. Keith served on countless other boards and community projects throughout his long career, including a term as President of the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Alberta.
His family fondly remembers his bedtime stories, world-ranging museum visits, and his good-humoured resistance to entropy in a household of three boys. Throughout his life, he supported his family and urged the people close to him to live up to their full potential. His children’s success and happiness were enormous sources of pride.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, May 18, at 2:00 pm at the McInnis and Holloway Chapel of the Bells (2720 Centre St. N, Calgary, AB). Memorial tributes may be made directly to The Alzheimer Society Alberta and Northwest Territories (www.alzheimer.ab.ca). Please specify that the contribution is intended for research. Having spent his life seeking answers to medical questions, Keith knew that we could solve this puzzle as well.Print This Obituary & Condolences