Dr. Jihad Youseff Chaya (a.k.a. Jay and PaPa), born 1954 in Sofar, Lebanon, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at the age of 58. Dr. Chaya was one of 9 sons and 1 daughter to Youseff and Habous Chaya (both predeceased). He is survived by his dear sister whom he loved immensely Nada and brothers Salim, Hussein and Adel. Predeceased by brothers Rachid and Anwar. Other brothers currently unaccounted for. He is survived by a large extended family in Lebanon including many nieces and nephews, one of whom is Anwar Chaya who is currently studying medicine as Jihad was his loving role model. Jihad was very proud of Anwar and hoped he would come to Canada too. At the age of 17 Dr. Chaya courageously travelled abroad to study science at Concordia University, in Montreal, Quebec where he successfully graduated and returned to the Middle East to embark upon a further pursuit of his love of study with a 5 year medical program. Graduating successfully from the University of Bagdad he then interned in England for 2 years. After a short return to Lebanon, his place of origin and the home of his heart, he returned again to Canada to pursue a better future and career opportunities. Struggling as a foreign medical graduate it was not easy as he spent years in Quebec City doing research for other Doctors but unable to practice medicine in Canada. In 1988 Dr. Chaya travelled to the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario to further his studies in Urology. Struggling as a foreign medical graduate to secure a license to practice surgery in Canada, Dr. Chaya eventually switched to study Psychiatry completing his five year residency at Queens University in 1994. He spent the next few years working at the North Bay Mental Health Center before settling permanently in Sarnia, Ontario. It was at the University of Western Ontario where Dr. Chaya met his life’s love Terry-Lynn Brandon and together they travelled to Queens University and onto many adventures thereafter. Dr. Chaya is survived by 2 children, son Julian Annoir Brandon-Chaya and Katie Brandon-Wheeler (step-daughter) along with their mother Terry-Lynn Brandon.
Dr. Chaya had a successful psychiatric private practice in Sarnia, Ontario while also working fulltime at the Regional Mental Health Center in St. Thomas, Ontario. At one point he served as Chief of Psychiatry at Bluewater Health. He further maintained his love of education by serving as an adjunct professor at the University of Western Ontario. He excelled at everything he did through hard work and determination. Carmella and Frank Montanino along with Leila and David Boushy were his family away from Lebanon. And he greatly loved them along with the Sadaka family, who always welcomed him in their home. There were too many other Friends to list but he was well loved by all. Funeral arrangements handled by SMITH FUNERAL HOME, 1576 London Line, Sarnia: Visitation Friday, March 15, 2013 from 7pm to 9pm and Saturday, March 16, 2013 from 2pm to 4pm and 7pm to 9pm. Donations to Bluewater Health Foundation attention: Mental Health or Suicide Awareness.
It was evidence of his faith that leads to the hope and belief that Jay is now resting in God’s Peace.