Our good friend and colleague, Dr Ron Calderisi, passed away suddenly while working in northern Ontario in July 2005.
Ron was born in 1948 and grew up in Montreal, attending Loyola College with Dr Hugh Freeman. They went on to medical school at McGill University, where Ron graduated in 1973. Ron entered the general surgery program at McGill University, transferring to the UBC general surgery program where he and I met, passed our fellowship exams in November 1983, and completed our surgical residency in 1984.
Ron established a very busy general surgery practice in Vancouver and was a surgical consultant and, subsequently, the chief of staff at St. Vincent’s Hospital. He was a superb general surgeon, revered by his patients and respected by his peers.
We had many memorable fishing trips together, and we remained very close friends throughout the years. He and his first wife, Diane, had two gorgeous children, Benjamin and Rachel, who live in Vancouver. When our children were young, we spent many of the holiday seasons together, and my sons called him Uncle Ron, because he and his family were more like family members than friends.
Ron did voluntary work in Africa, practised in Abu Dhabi, and recently returned to Canada to work in northern Ontario, where he was serving a small community and really enjoying the practice.
His first marriage ended in divorce, and when he married his second wife, Anna, he asked me to be his best man at the wedding. My family and I joined him and his family for what proved to be a most joyous occasion.
His son, Benjamin, graduated from the University of British Columbia in May 2005 and Ron attended the graduation. My wife Rhona and I had dinner with him on the night prior to returning to Ontario. He was in excellent spirits, his health was good, and it was, indeed, a great shock to all of us when we learned that he had died suddenly en route to the airport. Anna had completed her contract as an operating room nurse in Abu Dhabi, was returning to Canada, and Ron was going to accompany her on the return trip to Canada
Ron is survived by his wife, Anna; his children, Benjamin and Rachel; his siblings, Maria, Luigi, Irene, David, Michael, and his twin brother, Robert, and their spouses; stepchildren Karlee and Leigh; as well as numerous uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, cousins, grandnieces, and a great nephew. Ron will be sadly missed by all his family and friends. May God rest his soul.
—O.N.M. Panton, MB
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