March 14, 1936 – February 25, 2015
Canby, Joan Isabel (nee Breadner) 1936 – 2015 – After a brief illness, in her 78th year, Joan passed away at St Joseph’s Hospital Hamilton on February 25, 2015 with her children at her side. Joan was born in 1936 in Dauphin, Manitoba to Leslie and Effie (nee Cherry) Breadner. She is described by her surviving brother Bill Breadner as “her father’s pride and joy”. Her studies were her great passion in life, leading her to pursue a career in medicine, the only woman in the Class of 1960, Faculty of Medicine, at the University of Manitoba. After graduation and completing a general internship, she undertook specialty training in pediatrics at the Hospital for Sick Children. It was in Toronto that she met her future husband, Eugene Canby. Her pediatric practice brought her to Hamilton, where she worked for 20 years at the Chedoke-McMaster Hospital, and became involved with teaching in the early years of the medical school at McMaster. Joan is survived by Eugene and her two children Laura (Andrew) Howlett and Charles Canby, and two grandchildren Emma and Anne Howlett. She was a feminist and social activist. Joan had a great love of music, which she inherited from her mother. Music was a source of comfort, particularly during her long struggle with the chronic mental health issues which made her final years so difficult. The family would like to extend their thanks to the caregivers at the Durand Retirement Residence and the Meadows Long Term Care Centre, her psychiatrists, and the ER and ICU teams at St.Joseph’s Hospital. She will be missed. A memorial service will take place on Saturday, May 9, 2015 at 2pm at WESTDALE UNITED CHURCH in Hamilton, Ontario. In lieu of flowers, as an expression of sympathy, the family requests donations to the St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton Foundation (Mental Health).
I am so sorry for your loss. I have many fond memories of Thanksgiving weekends at your cottage. We had lots of fun as next door neighbours. I liked your mum very much. My memory fails me sometimes but I have a recollection of a lot of classical music being played in your house. And I remember thinking it was very cool that your mum was a doctor, not a lot of female doctors at that time. Being the trail blazer that she was, she would appreciate your openness about her mental health issues. It is important for all to know that this can affect anyone, even the most brilliant of people like your mum. She was a beautiful lady, she had the most radiant of smiles and I do remember her laugh very clearly! I know that you will find comfort in your memories. My deepest sympathies, Sally Anderson
As a medical student in the class of 1974, I knew Dr. Canby as a founding parent of the new medical model being developed at McMaster. She helped to formulate the standards of the program. In the face of the uncertainties of the new program, she expressed the realities of the work, and encouraged the establishment of good relationships with patients and other staff. She lit the way to good practice by what she did and who she was, an excellent role model. I was sorry to hear of her struggle with chronic mental health issues, especially as I limited my practice to this field prior to my retirement. I have a profound respect for the difficulties these create for patients and their families. I honour Dr. Canby for her significant contribution to the McMaster/Hamilton community. My condolences to her family at this time of grief.
Sorry to hear about Joan’s death. I was so attached to her and the Durand Retirement Home.
I was sorry to hear of your mum’s passing. She always had a “calmness” to her. I loved our visits to your cottage. It was always so relaxing. You were the best next-door neighbours. Your mum was always genuinely interested in hearing our news. She’d pull up in your driveway in your mini-station wagon and ask how our day was. I liked that…she was very caring. My prayers are with you at this time. Deborah Hunt (nee Anderson)
Dear Eugene, Laura & Charles & family. We extend our sincere condolences with the loss of Joan, your wife, mother,and grandmother. Ida shared many stories through the years and your family was very close to her heart. She truly loved all of you. We are upholding
you in our prayers, may our heavenly Father bless and comfort you. With deepest sympathy. Love Jack and Evelyn Dyk.
To Eugene and Family
It’s only today that I found out the passing of Dr Joan Canby, our sincere sympathy and condolences to the whole family.
I hope you still remember me, This is Pablo Cusi we used to work together at College Park.
My wife and i still have a good fond memories every summer in your beautiful cottage even kids really treasures those times. my kids are already professionals and grown up now and living on their own.
i hope that you will respond on my email so we can get together !!
Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family