We Remember

MUSLEH, Shawki George

December 7, 1937 — May 6, 2021

On the evening of Thursday, May 6, 2021, after spending the day with family, Shawki George Musleh passed away peacefully at the age of 83. He leaves behind his loving wife, Samira, three children and their spouses, three grandchildren, and a large extended family.

Shawki was born in Beit Sahour, Palestine in 1937 and, along with his family, survived the Palestinian Nakba of 1948. His first trip away from home was to attend Morris Harvey College in Charleston, West Virginia. Upon graduating, he returned to Palestine to begin his career as a high school science teacher. After his homeland became occupied by Israeli forces in 1967, Shawki, his new wife, and young son emigrated from Palestine to Vancouver to start a new life.

Shawki tried his hand at some odd jobs before being offered a teaching position in East End, Saskatchewan in 1968, which began a long and passionate career teaching high school chemistry and biology. During this time, Shawki and Samira loved their new chosen country, faced the challenges and joys of becoming established as new immigrants, and contributed greatly to their community and social circles. Despite this, they always missed being “back home” in Palestine where their roots and hearts were firmly planted.

Throughout his life, Shawki continually pined for his simple, small town life in Palestine and repeatedly told stories about what it was like growing up there. He was also hurting deeply for his relatives who continued to live under occupation and thus had limited options. Shawki’s caring and generous spirit was demonstrated by he and his wife working hard to sponsor relatives, so they could emigrate to Canada. Not only did they offer their family home to others, but Shawki also offered himself as a proxy parent to enable nephews, cousins, his brother’s family, and many friends to earn university degrees, start careers, become citizens, and create legacies of their own in a new land.

Shawki loved learning and giving. In addition to his B.Sc. in Natural Sciences, he completed his B.E.d. and then, after health issues required him to retire from teaching, completed the necessary requirements for a Masters in Human Justice – this education reflected his deeply held values for equity, fairness, and compassion for all. This was also evident through his years of volunteer work at the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) and his local food bank.

Family was the most important aspect of Shawki’s life, and he was never happier than when his children, their spouses, and his grandchildren were all “home” in his house. He would sit in his special recliner and smile brightly, chat with whomever was nearby, sometimes doze off a little, and enjoy sharing a drink or hearing/telling stories in the warmth of the gathering.

As much as he loved a gathering of family and close friends, Shawki also loved a good meal, hot coffee, great music, a good belly laugh, sitting in the sun, and the occasional evening ouzo or brandy on crushed ice. Anyone who knew him felt the warmth of his heart and the sweetness of his smile.

We will remember you with love and miss you dearly. Rest in Peace dear Dad, Husband, Brother, Cousin, Friend.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in memory of Shawki George Musleh can be made to Kelowna’s Gospel Mission and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

A Service will be held to honour Shawki, due to the current pandemic restrictions it will be by invitation only. The family would like to invite all who want to pay their respects to join by Livestream on Wednesday, May 12, 2021 at 10:00 am PST (see below). A recording will be made available to view shortly thereafter.

If you wish to send a condolence, post photos, or share a memory please scroll down the page to the area called “Condolences”.


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Kelowna’s Gospel Mission and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada Link: kelownagospelmission.ca, www.heartandstroke.ca




  • Emile Sahoury says:

    My dear friend Shawki, may God rest your soul. You left us with awesome memories through which you will always be remembered. Our deepest condolences to my dearest sister Samira, nephew Husam and nieces Sue and Nawal. God be with you dealing with your loss.

  • Maram and Nicola Ishaq says:

    Shawki (Abu Hussam) was an amazing friend who always welcomed us with a great smile. He will be remembered for his love to his family, friends and home town. Our deepest condolences to Samira and his children. May his soul Rest In Peace and May his memory be eternal.

  • Hayat Qumsieh says:

    Rest in peace my friend. We will cherish the good times and memories we shared together through the years. You will be missed. But your memories last forever in our minds. Our hearts will be with samira to go through the loss of her soul mate. Be strong my dear. We are all going there. He was just ahead of us. Rest in peace my friend

  • Susan Rushton says:

    I did not know Mr. Musleh. However, my husband and I are privileged to be the neighbors of Mr. Musleh’s son, Sam, wife Cristina and their boys Nic and Noah. I’m convinced that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Sam is a wonderful man; and I know that much of what he learned about being a good person he learned from his father. Thank you, Mr. Musleh. Your wisdom, love and humor live on.

  • Judi Johnston says:

    Our deepest sympathy as you mourn the loss of Shawki. I had the pleasure of serving as the Rocanville School rep for local contract negotiations with Shawki as chairperson for the teachers. He had a natural knack for lightening the mood in the boardroom during stressful meetings with the Division Board. I admired this talent and the man. I will remember Shawki with fondness and respect.
    Judi Johnston

  • Thomas and Diane Newton says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with your family at this time.. Shawki will be missed.

  • Becky Shomali says:

    Uncle Shawki, as we called him, was a man of strong faith and compassion. Raouf and I feel very blessed to have visited Canada to see him and Aunt Samira. We are truly sorry to hear of his passing. Heaven has gained a special angel. Aunt Samira, we will keep you and your family in our prayers.

  • nasim sahoury says:

    my condolences to cousin Smira and her family for the lost of a great father . we are praying to God to rest his soul in peace .

  • Marcelle sahouri says:

    My deepest condolences 💐 to auntie Samira and to all his beloved family I’m so sorry for his loss he was a great man so sorry 😢


    Our deepest sympathy to my sister Samira, nephew Husam and nieces Suzy and Nawal for the loss of my brother in law Shawki, a great man we loved dearly. May God bless his soul. He will be in our hearts for ever. Rest in peace dear brother.

  • Nicolas Attieh & Munira says:

    We send you dear Samira & family our deepest condolences for the loss of your beloved husband Shawki, we pray to God bless & rest his soul. We will always remember his friendship.

  • Marilyn Paul says:

    On behalf of the Moosomin & District Superannuated Teachers I would like to send our deepest sympathy on Shawki’s passing. During his years at Rocanville School he was active with STF. Those teachers who worked with him remember him fondly. Our thoughts are with you at this sad time.

  • Allan and Penny Yung says:

    Penny and I are saddened to hear of your family’s loss. We have such fond memories of Shawki. He quickly became part of our teaching “family” at Rocanville School. He was friends with everyone. We appreciated his knowledge, his passion for his profession and his sense of humour. He was very active in
    the Moosomin Branch of the STF .Penny and I appreciated the hospitality shown by Shawki and Samira whenever we visited, be it t their home in Moosomin, Rocanville, or Regina. We were not Palestinian, so we were not aware that unless you left a bit of food on your plate, it would be heaped full again!! What wonderful meals, visits and ouzo! But beware the coffee if Shawki had made it!! So many wonderful memories including his retirement party. His family will be left with so many wonderful memories as well. God bless. Memory eternal. Allan and Penny Yung

  • Sami & Claude Musleh says:

    Our deepest condolences. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. May God rest his soul in peace. His memory eternal.🙏🙏

  • Isa abu sada says:

    Unfortunately we didn’t have enough time together, that is the palestinian diaspora, we always hopped to be togather, in our mother town Palestine, you are leaving us today with kind beautiful memories. Our deepest sympathy and condolences to your family who are our family. Rest in peace Dear Uncle Abu Hussam. الله يرحمه ويسكنه فسيح جناته

  • Sharon Tipping says:

    My deepest sympathy in your loss. God be with you during this time

  • Ingeborg says:

    Love and peace to the family.
    Rejoice and be glad.
    Shawkie is with our Lord and God

  • Mitri Musleh says:

    To our cousin and best friend Shawki:
    I never thought my wife Barbara and myself would have have to say good bye to you, but the time has come and we need to say something. Our life together for the past 50 years has been filled with happiness, emotions and hope and for that we say: So Long Shawki as your memories will be part of our life for as long as we live.. .

  • Suad and George Araj says:

    It is not just a brother-in-law whom I lost, Shawki was an endeared brother. A cherished spirit where together we shared lots of thoughts, insightful talks, family memories as well as humanitarian advice spiritual aspects and vision.
    An ever optimistic man empowered by a lovely and serene smile that radiates to calm any absurdities of turmoils in the mind of whoever is infringe of him. Shawki Ed priorities and comfort originated and was entrenched in his care to his immediate family Samira, Husain, Suzan and Nawal and grandchildren. This enabled his prevailing and disseminating of warmness, care ,attention and love to his extended family ,a sustainable ,tangible comfort to everyone. The almost weekly calls and talks with us was a major recharge to our dented mood and spirit from the devastating situation in Lebanon.
    One cannot but deeply miss such a wonderful brother and friend. Surely his memories will remain vivid in our mind and life. May God Bless his soul and heaven be his eternal sanctuary, meeting the loved ones who travelled there earlier.

  • Barb Silvester says:

    Thinking of you at this difficult time and sending my heartfelt sympathy,

  • Riad Khalil Abu Saada says:

    Our deepest condolences to our uncle’s family, great loss uncle Shawki , we will miss his smile his warm voice his words which always filled with faith, humor and love. May God rest his soul in peace.

  • Ross and Helen Strong says:

    My sincere sympathy to all members of Shawki’s family. I remember him vividly from his Rocanville teaching years and in addition to his contributions as a teacher, I and many others appreciate his years of invaluable service to our local STF. Ross and I enjoyed a chance meeting with him more recently in Kelowna. He obviously passed on his love of learning to his children and we could see his smile, sense of humour and pride in his family’s achievements had not changed. We know you will cherish the memories. Helen Strong

  • Marion Donald says:

    To Samira, my heartfelt sympathy in your loss . Thinking of you and our many years of friendship in Moosomin..

  • Diane Scott says:

    Dear Samira & family,
    Shawki was a very kind man who had a great sense of humour and it was always fun to be in his company. We had many interesting talks and loads of laughs at reception when I worked at the Wedgewood.

  • Patrician Grant Herrin says:

    My father, Jerry William Grant of Waycross, Georgia went to school with Shawki at Morris Harvey College in Charleston, West Virginia. My father is staying with me and asked me to locate Shawki as he was a good friend of his in college. We are saddened to hear of his passing. Our deepest condolences to all family members.
    Patrician Grant Herrin, Augusta, Georgia
    Jerry William Grant, Waycross, Georgia

    • Sue Musleh says:

      My Dad would have loved to hear from his old friend. It is so unfortunately the timing didn’t line up before he passed away. I’m sorry for the delay replying. Your words and sentiments meant a lot and I did intend to reply to you here sooner. All the best to you both and your families.

  • Christoph Reiners says:

    I was Shawki and Samira’s pastor in Abbotsford and remember both of them fondly. I was sad to learn of Shawki’s passing. May he rest in peace and rise in glory. My condolences to Samira and the family.

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