It is with profound sorrow that we announce the passing of James (Jamie) Stephen Kissick, at his home, surrounded by love, on January 26, 2023. Jamie did not want to characterize his cancer illness as a battle but, there is no question that, in the words of Tom Petty, he “went down swingin’.” He took every opportunity to embrace each aspect of a life well lived. Jamie leaves behind a family that he treasured: his wife Cathie, his children (who he described as his greatest joy and most important legacy), Matthew (Jill) and Emily, brothers John (Jules), Peter (Pauline), nephews and nieces; Sean, Katie, Claire, Brendan and Will, and his mother-in-law Joan Walter.
Born in Montreal Quebec, to Norm and Lois Kissick, Jamie lived the early years of his life in Beaconsfield, until a family move to Scarborough in 1970. These foundational years sparked a life-long family rivalry between a passionate Habs fan surrounded by Leafs fans. Nonetheless, the family bond was firmly secured by a love for each other, all forms of sport, music, literature and wit.
After receiving his medical degree from Queen’s University, Jamie began his career in London, Ontario where he had a mixed practice of Emergency and Family Medicine. It was here that he and Cathie met, married and began their life together. While providing medical coverage for a local soccer team, his interest turned to sport medicine which led to further training and a shift to practice in this area. A career opportunity to work with a brand new hockey team in Ottawa led to a move to Kanata and a 10 year position as the Ottawa Senators Team Physician. Imagine his angst when their very first opponent was the Montreal Canadiens!
The world of sport medicine brought many amazing opportunities and collaboration with wonderful colleagues. This included medical coverage for the Ottawa Renagades, the Ottawa Redblacks and countless sport competitions. He was a member of the Team Canada delegation at several Olympic Games and other International level competitions. When not travelling for these teams and events, he was providing medical care to the “weekend warrior athlete” at local sport medicine clinics. Many an introduction led to “Oh Dr Kissick, you saw me when I strained… (insert body part here).” With sport, often comes concussion and a new interest and passion emerged: Jamie embraced the opportunity to work with colleagues from around the world in writing, publishing and promoting evidence based protocols for the management of concussion. Perhaps his deepest passion was Paralympic Sport. This began with a role as team doctor for the Canadian Para-Ice Hockey team and an amazing seven years travelling the world with them to Paralympic and World Championship competitions. From this came membership and the Chair position of the International Paralympic Medical Committee and a position with the World Anti-Doping Agency. In the latter stage of his career, he retired his clinical practice and joined the Canadian Medical Protective Association where he was a Physician Advisor for fifteen years and embraced a different avenue to utilize his skills supporting physicians across the country.
With these career opportunities came international travel and the fostering of many special friendships with people at home and around the world. To say he had many friends is a vast understatement and he loved and embraced each and every one of them. Jamie approached life and fun with the same passion and attention to detail that he committed to his career. He was a knowledgeable music fan with an impressive music collection. He was compiling theme oriented mixed-tapes long before we were sharing music files and he was always up for live music. He followed all sports, again with impressive knowledge and played recreationally until his illness prevented him from doing so.
We wish to express our sincere gratitude to Dr. Michael Vickers, Dr. Marc Gaudet, Dr. Tara Jennings and the many nurses, technicians and community health care workers who supported us in every step of this difficult journey.
Jamie liked nothing better than a good party, where he would don a crazy shirt to host his guests. He was the guy that always made sure no one got left out of the fun. His family invites you to join us on Saturday February 4, 2023, from 1-5pm at the Brookstreet Hotel, 525 Legget Dr, Kanata , to celebrate his life with food, stories and toasts. At approximately 2:30pm, we will have a short program to reflect on Jamie’s amazing life. In lieu of flowers, we would ask you to consider a donation to Right to Play (www.righttoplay.ca) , Music Counts (www.musicounts.ca) or the Paralympic Foundation of Canada (www.paralympic.ca)