NAIMAN, Dr. Sheldon Charles
October 2, 1937 – July 24, 2016
We are sad to announce the passing of Sheldon (Shelly) Charles Naiman on July 24, 2016 after a short illness, surrounded by his children at home.
Shelly was a beloved family man, friend and mentor to many individuals in the medical community and beyond.
Survived by his children, Aaron Naiman (Bet), Rachel Wilson (Rob), Jared Naiman, Jon Naiman (Jenn) and Aleya Naiman (Derek); and his brother, Neil Naiman (Joanne).
He also leaves his cherished grandchildren, Jacob, Charlie, Nate, Skylar, Chace, Cole, Max and Sloan; his nephew, Daniel Naiman (Liv); his late wife's nephews, Chris Rowan, Sam Rowan and Teddy Rowan; and the mother of his children, Marcia Schultz.
Shelly was predeceased by the love of his life, Dr. Linda Vickars, in 2014.
Born in Toronto in 1937, Shelly entered the medical school at the University of Toronto after a high school teacher told him he would never be admitted to a medical school if he continued to miss classes watching and playing baseball. His reply was "I can get into anything" and he loved reveling in and repeating that story his entire life.
After medical school Shelly moved to California to intern at LA County Hospital. While there, Shelly became interested in bleeding and clotting problems, which led to him specializing in the field of hematology. Shelly began exploring options to return to Canada and was recruited by Dr. Mac Whitelaw to Vancouver.
Shelly became the province's first Clinical Hematologist and the first Head of the Division of Clinical Hematology (1976). Shelly was one of the original members of the Hematology Examination Board for the Royal College. He, along with several others, was involved in the original proposal for a Marrow Transplant Program at VGH.
After a lengthy clinical career, Shelly changed his focus and became a laboratory- based physician. He was a force in the training of hematologists through the UBC program. He was able to bring clinical care and the laboratory together as no one else could. He was widely regarded as a most outstanding educator. His impromptu lectures on virtually any area of hematology were a testament to his vast knowledge and experience in the field. It seemed there was nothing he didn't know in hematology. He was recognized with many teaching awards and many of his students considered him the best teacher they ever had. In 2009 the Doctors of BC awarded Shelly the prestigious Dr. Cam Coady Award of Excellence for his lifetime achievements.
Shelly was a tremendous man, a true "mensch" who always had time for others. He loved telling and hearing jokes. Shelly and Linda were passionate about travelling and visited all seven continents before Linda's untimely death and the loss of his eyesight following his retirement.
Shelly's greatest joy, especially in the years since Linda's death, was his bond with his grandchildren. He always brightened whenever the sounds of his condo became "invaded" with his young brood.
The family would like to thank Joan Cortez and Mary Ann Rumbaoa, Shelly and Linda's caregivers in their last years. They became more than just employees and part of the family. Also the many doctors that helped Shelly over the years including Dr. Lyle Levy, Dr. Merrick Tosefsky, the hospital staff at VGH and palliative nurses during his time at home, and the entire staff at Tapestry for all their support these past two years.
Shelly and Linda created an endowment at UBC at the Centre for Blood Research and the Naiman-Vickars Multipurpose lab in the Life Sciences Centre has been named in recognition of this gift to UBC. If desired, donations may be made to this Endowment in lieu of flowers - "UBC Sheldon Naiman and Linda Vickars Hematology Endowment Fund" c/o Development Office, UBC Faculty of Medicine, 317 – 2194 Health Sciences Mall, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z3. Donate online.
There will be no service at Shelly's request.