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Williams, John A. (Jack) BSc, MD, FRCSC

October 21, 1930 – October 14, 2009

Dr. John A. (Jack) Williams died at home peacefully and joined his Heavenly Father October 14th, 2009. Jack is survived by his loving wife Joyce; children Dr. Geoff Williams (Barb), Janice Finkbeiner (Jim); grandchildren Laurel, Connor, Claire, Wesley and Evan; siblings Jean Heavenor (Ken), Ruth Stinson (Doug), and Richard Williams; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Born in Vulcan, raised on the family farm in Ensign Alberta, Jack graduated in Medicine at the U of A in 1955. Jack and Joyce were married in Moose Jaw SK in August 1955. After internship at the Calgary General they embarked on a medical mission with the Presbyterian Church in Canada. Jack was the Chief Medical Officer of a 100 bed hospital in Jobat, India from 1959 to 1963. He completed a Urology residency at UBC and returned to Calgary in 1969. He practiced Urology and from 1976-1991 was chief surgeon of the Renal Transplantation Program at the Foothills Hospital. He served as an Associate Professor of Surgery, President of the Foothills Medical Staff, a Chief of the Division of Urology, a Urologic Team Member of the U of C Infertility Clinic. He loved not only to teach, but to lead students to discover the joy of learning and was a keen lifelong learner himself. He was active in the formation of the Prostate Cancer Institute. In 2007, Jack was recognized by both the Calgary Medical Society for his outstanding service to the medical profession and given the Distinguished Service Award from the Faculty of Medicine.

He was an active member of Grace Presbyterian Church, serving on the Board of Managers and as an Elder. With the aid of many medical professionals and his deep faith, Jack met the challenges of prostate cancer with optimism, grace and dignity.
His great joys were his family, summers at Mara Lake and visiting Vulcan to check on his crop.

Those wishing to pay their respects may do so at McINNIS & HOLLOWAY’S Park Memorial Chapel (5008 Elbow Drive S.W.) on Thursday, October 22, 2009 from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.

A celebration of his life will be held at Grace Presbyterian Church (1009 – 15th Avenue S.W.) on Friday, October 23, 2009 at 1:00 p.m. If friends so desire, donations may be made in Jack’s memory to Grace Presbyterian Church for the Jobat Residential School Fund 1009 – 15th Avenue S.W., T2R 0S5 or the Prostate Cancer Institute #100, 1011 Glenmore Trail S.W., T2V 4R6. Forward condolences through

In living memory of Dr. Jack Williams, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES Park Memorial Chapel, 5008 ELBOW DRIVE S.W. Telephone: (403) 243-8200.

Offer Condolence for the family of Williams, John A. (Jack) BSc, MD, FRCSC

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Condolence Messages

  1. Lori Renwick & Mark Ellis

    Please accept our condolences and know that our thoughts are with you Joyce & family at your time of need.


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  2. Jim and Jori Cooper

    Please accept our sincerest condolonces in the loss of Jack. Jim tells his favorite memories of playing hide and seek in the HUGE house in Mount Royal. I will always appreciate him getting me on the right track with my kidney issues. Know that all of you are in our thoughts during this difficult time.
    With best wishes
    Jim, Jori, Colby and Carlee Cooper

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  3. Brenda Smith--RN

    Joyce, & family,

    I was so saddened to hear that our “Dr. Jack” has died.
    I believe he was an extraordinary man. Everytime I visited with him, he was attentive, interested, and kind.
    He will be dearly missed.
    I am so sorry for your loss.
    Please take care of you, dear Joyce.
    Love & Hugs, Brenda Smith–RN at TBCC

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  4. Doug and Fay Clark

    We would like to express our condolences to Joyce and the rest of Dr. Williams’ family.

    When Doug was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer, we got the news from Dr. Williams. He could not have been more caring, considerate and compassionate. It was not good news for us, but through his kind nature and help, he allowed us to know we could deal with the diagnosis and move on with our life. We later worked with Dr. Williams as volunteers at the Prostate Cancer Institute. It was a pleasure to know and work with Dr. Williams.

    Take care, we know you will have many happy memories of your life that was shared with Dr. Williams.

    Doug and Fay

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  5. You have my sincere condolences.

    Mel Shannon

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  6. Dear Joyce and family, The world has lost a gentle giant. Jack was such a dear and caring gentleman, and a gifted and compassionate physician. Vic and I valued his friendship and his medical expertise, and admired and appreciated him greatly. The world is a better place because of Jack Williams. He will be deeply missed and always remembered.
    Please accept my deepest sympathy.
    Marion Rogers

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  7. Nicholas Roukes

    Dr. Williams was a compassionate doctor with a terrific bedside manner – and a wonderful sense of humour. He will be sorely missed by all who knew and respected him. He made us laugh with his great presentations at the Prostaid meetings.
    Nicholas Roukes

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  8. Dear Joyce and family We were so saddened to hear of Jack’s passing. Jack was a special man who delivered care and compassion to many people. He will be thoroughly missed. Ron and I extend to you all our heartfelt consolences at this very difficult time.
    We will keep you in our prayers,
    Lovingly remembered

    Ron and Mona McKinley

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  9. Terence and Edith Penelhum

    It is a joy to have this opportunity to pay tribute to Dr. Jack Williams, my favourite physician. I was privileged to be his patient from 1989 to 1996, and was helped immeasurably through the problems of stone disease. He was wise, kind, fatherly and always a delight to be with. One typical case of his kindness was his being willing to perform a basket extraction on a weekend, thus enabling us to depart on the Monday for a conference in Australia. We were distressed to read about two years ago in the Globe that he was himself smitten by the cancer he had helped so many others to combat, but not surprised to read now of the faith he showed in the face of it. He was a privilege to know;a truly beautiful man.

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  10. Kaye Fisher(Thorp)

    As I did not know Joyce and your family, my condolences are more for Jack’s sisters and brother. (I taught you, Richard, in my first year of teaching!)

    The last I saw Jack was at my mother’s funeral in Vulcan—it was so kind of him to take time out of his busy schedule.

    It is really not something I should be adding in condolences, but we lost our sister, Joan on Oct 7th. Cancer also!

    Something from the obituary that I did not know was that Jack spent time in India. Shall have to check where Jobat is situated. Although I have been to India six times, I have not been to that city.

    My love to all from a former classmate of Jack’s (grades 1-5)

    Kaye Fisher (Thorp)

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  11. Marcheta Gray & family

    My dear Joyce and family, the universe has now recalled the best humanity has to offer.

    I was so proud of this cousin not only for his medical accomplishments, of which there were many, but proud of the man. I have never met or known a more kindly, caring, gentle and loving human being. How lucky you were to have had a representative of pure goodness in your lives.

    My thoughts are with you,

    Marcheta Gray & family

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  12. Don & Linda Snow

    Joyce, Geoff & Family: Our sympathy and greetings to honor a good friend and one of my favorite doctors and curling associate.
    We hope to share your celebration of Jack’s life at Grace on Friday.
    Don & Linda Snow

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  13. Luella Baerg (Palosky)

    I was saddened to hear of Jack’s death. I briefly met you, Joyce, at UofA when you and Jack were dating. I did not know that you spent some years as medical missionaries in India. Missions are dear to my heart (our son has spent some 20 years in Africa with MAF).

    The Williams family were part of my life for the first 21 years. My father worked for Jack’s parents when I was born. I learned to walk between Jack and Jean. Then they seemed to blaze the way for me as I entered Jr. High, Sr. High and then on to UofA. When I was in nursing, at UAH and taking a course at the Faculty of Medicine, Jack was there to encourage me in my struggle with microbiology. So I sense a bit of a loss even though we had lost touch. I am most grateful for those early years.

    My condolences to you Joyce and your family as well as to Jack’s siblings.

    Love and prayers
    Luella Baerg (Palosky)

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  14. Dear Joyce, Janice, and Geoff,

    I am so sorry to hear that Dr. Williams has passed. He will always be Dr. Williams to me. I am so fortunate to have been part of your family. Dr. Williams was an incredible roll model for me, and not just in the medical field, but also as a person. His kindness and Christianity was part of his very being. I was struck as a young person that he really never said a bad word about anyone even if it was obvious that he may have had reservations. His support of me gave me confidence just when it was needed.
    I am sure he will be greatly missed and I wish you all peace in your time of grief. I have many happy memories of my time with you, and feel I became a better person because of it.
    God Bless.


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  15. Walter Twiddy - NeighbourLink Calgary

    Dear Williams family: it is with sadness that I and the staff here at NeighbourLink have learned of Jack’s passing. Our deepest sympathies are extended to you at this time.
    Jack volunteered for many years and many hours to help the poor in Calgary through our agency. I think I could safely say he delivered hundreds of food hampers to needy families downtown over the years – he worked so willingly for the benefit of others.
    One short anecdote: several years ago World Vision who used to be our affiliate nationally came to Calgary as part of a national program audit/evaluation. Jack attended a focus group, and when the time came to speak to what NeighbourLink Calgary would need to thrive in the future, Jack was the only one who supported me in saying we needed far better office facilities than the basement of a small church in order to thrive and grow. I’ve always remembered his support for this vision and appreciated it so much. I reminded and thanked him for that support several times in later years when NeighbourLink did grow, did move into far better facilities, has thrived, in fact leading up to become in recent times a charity with now a large capacity to help the poor. Once again, that moment of vision and support from Jack I will never forget and will always be thankful to him for.

    Once again, our sympathies are extended to you. May the Divine peace and comfort that comes from God be yours in these days of grieving your loss of a great man.

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  16. Ken Ruttle, his daughters and their families

    Dear Joyce, Janice and Geoff – We were saddened to hear of Jack’s passing. We have always thought so highly of him. He was a wonderful, compassionate gentleman and a well respected physician. He will be sorely missed by all who have known him.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
    Ken Ruttle, his daughters (Patrice, Pam, Sharon, Georgina and Shirley) and their families

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  17. My love and prayers continue for your comfort.

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  18. Dear Dr. Williams,
    On behalf of Steve, Dwayne and myself we would like to extend our sincere Condolences to you and your family. You may not be aware but your father helped my daughter when she had kidney reflux. We were very greatful.

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  19. Stephanie Howard

    Geoff, Barb, Connor and Laurel,

    There are no words I can express to take away the sorrow you must be feeling. My heart goes out to all of you and the rest of your family.

    You are in my thoughts,

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    It has been my great pleasure to know Jack since we worked together at the Foothills Hospital (I was the Director of Pharmacy)
    He was instrumental in diagnosing my prostate cancer – I’ve now survived 13 years
    I had the great pleasure of working with Jack on patients at the Prostate Cancer Institute
    He was a great physician and a happy person
    He will be missed by all who knew him
    Sincere condolences to you and the family
    May his soul rise to heaven and be in peace
    Bob Heim (pharmacist/friend)

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  21. Joyce, Janice, Geoff & Family,

    It was with great sadness to hear of Jack’s passing. He contributed so much to humanity and made our world a far better place. It was a privilege to know him despite the fact that our ‘cousin’ gatherings were few and far between. It was well known that he was Mom’s favourite nephew and his name forever came up in conversation. She took the news of his passing with great hardship.

    Joyce, I’m now 61 but I remember going to your wedding in Moose Jaw back in 1955. I was 7 years old and remember feeling rather special wearing my fancy dress with hat and gloves to this important event in your life.

    I hope all of your special memories with Jack will help ease the pain of his loss.

    My thoughts are with you and your family.


    Pat Robson & Family

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  22. Dear Joyce and Family:

    Our family’s sincere condolences on the passing of Jack. During the few years we have spent getting to know him he quickly became a good friend to our family. We will miss his always cheerful smile and greeting at church. We pray for his peace and rest.

    The Marsh Family (Ross Sr., Ross Jr., Helena and William)

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  23. Harry and Fay Donaldson

    Sincere condolences to Mrs. Joyce Williams and family.

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  24. Paul and Judy Rose

    Dear Joyce and Family
    We were saddened to hear the news of Jack’s passing and we want to express our sincere condolences to you and your family on the loss of a truly wonderful gentleman.
    We had the pleasure of meeting Jack only once on our trip west in 2002, but it was a delightful pleasure to meet the both of you and to be able to share an afternoon together.
    It is from that very afternoon that we have had the great pleasure of making connections with some very wonderful relatives of which we include you and Jack.
    Our thoughts are certainly with you.

    Paul and Judy Rose, Guelph

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  25. Ken & Ruth Anquist

    Dear Joyce and Family
    We were saddened to hear of the passing of Jack and would like to extend our heart felt sympathy to you and the family. Jack was an inspiration to us during our time together at U of A and to the present. May the Lord be your comfort and strength.
    Sincerely Ken and Ruth Anquist

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  26. Betty Ann (& Norm) Barton

    We were very sad to hear of your loss Joyce.
    I have so many fond memories of Jack who jokingly always called me ‘Ettyban’.
    He was a wonderful man.
    I am glad Norm got to meet him.
    Betty Ann

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