J. Alan M.D. McCann

McCann, J. Alan, M.D.

August 20, 1922 -December 20, 2005


Dr. Alan McCann passed away peacefully, in the presence of his loving family on Tuesday, December 20, 2005, at Oceanview Extended Care Unit, St. Joseph’s General Hospital, Comox, BC.

Pre-deceased by his parents, Dr. and Mrs. A.S. McCann, brothers Flying Officer Jack McCann, Ronald McCann and nephew Bob McCann, he is survived by Shirley, his loving wife of forty-nine years, son Ken (Bev), daughter Susan Paltiel (Jason), six grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, nephews, nieces and cousins.

Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Al attended Laura Secord Elementary and Gordon Bell Collegiate. After high school graduation, he enlisted in the R.C.A.F. (August 1942), graduating as a pilot (Flying Officer) and was posted overseas to England. He was attached to an R.A.F. crew, flying Halifax sorties, below radar, towing gliders and parachutists beyond enemy lines.

After 805 days overseas, he returned to Canada and was discharged in November 1945. Al enrolled at the University of Manitoba and earned his BSc (biology) in 1949 and his M.D. in 1955. Following his junior internship at Winnipeg General Hospital, he spent a year in post-graduate work at Shaunessey Veteran’s Hospital in Vancouver.

In June 1956, he married Shirley McNair of Winnipeg, and the couple moved to Powell River where Al practiced family medicine for two years. He applied for an opening in the Comox Valley and joined Courtenay Medical Associates where he worked as a family physician for twenty-nine years. During his medical practice, Al entered into the homes and lives of many people, earning their trust, their respect and their love.

Al retired in April 1987 and hoped to further pursue his many interests, including computers, HAM radio, painting, carpentry and woodworking, stained glass, gardening, electronics, camping, curling, golf and entertaining friends and family. Unfortunately, he was unable to fully enjoy his retirement as he was challenged by multiple health problems during the last sixteen years. Overcoming prostrate cancer, he was instrumental in founding a local men’s support group.

A loving family man, a loyal friend and a caring, conscientious physician, Al touched the lives of many, and all were enriched by the experience.

A Celebration of his life was held on December 28, 2005, at the Comox Valley Funeral Home, with the Reverend Ray Brandon officiating. The family would like to thank Dr. John Fitzpatrick and the staff of Oceanview E.C.U., where Al resided for the past three years, for their compassionate care, and our many friends for their caring concern throughout Al’s illnesses.


“Forever our Christmas Angel”


For those who so desire, donations in Al’s memory may be made to St. Joseph’s General Hospital Foundation, designated to Oceanview Extended Care Unit, 2137 Comox Avenue, Comox, B.C. V9M 1P2