Dr Muhammad “Max” Zahir, 1936–2021

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 63 , No. 4 , May 2021 , Pages 150 Obituaries

Dr Muhammad “Max” Zahir

On 20 March 2021, Dr Max Zahir continued his journey into new realms. Symbolically, our beloved Max left us as we ushered in the first day of spring. The finality of his passing was met with the dawning of rebirth.

Max graduated from King Edward Medical College in Lahore, Pakistan, and as top graduate in his year, he was awarded a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to study hematology at Oxford University. In 1965 he obtained a PhD with a thesis titled “The Nature of Wound Healing with Special Reference to Scab Formation.”

In 1967, soon after completing his PhD, Max joined the faculty at the University of Maryland as an assistant professor of medicine. However, the pressure associated with the academic publish-or-perish lifestyle prompted a move to New Brunswick, where he joined the medical staff at the Moncton Hospital. The biting cold winters were not always easy to navigate, and a move to British Columbia followed in 1974. A 28-year career with the Pathology Department at Royal Inland Hospital was the highlight of his decorated career.

During the latter part of his tenure at Royal Inland Hospital, Max held the position of chief of pathology. This experience led him to partake in a number of outside affiliations, including 5 years of service as president of the Society of Specialist Physicians and Surgeons of BC (1993–1998), as well as chair of the Laboratory and Nuclear Medicine Subcommittee for the BC Ministry of Health just prior to his retirement in 2002. With any professional endeavor, Max was lauded for his diplomacy, attentiveness, and unfailing leadership.

A momentous retirement project was the publication of his memoirs in the book titled 1947: A Memoir of Indian Independence.
—Kate Zahir

Kate Zahir. Dr Muhammad “Max” Zahir, 1936–2021. BCMJ, Vol. 63, No. 4, May, 2021, Page(s) 150 - Obituaries.



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