It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of Mr. Edward Cohen - a much-beloved supporter of the Douglas and founder of our Sculpture Garden.

Edward's connection with the Douglas started in January 1966, when he joined the team as a nursing assistant. During his work on the wards, he marveled at the dedication of his fellow nursing assistants, who he called the Douglas' "unsung heroes". Convinced that their contributions should be formally recognized, he successfully petitioned the Douglas to erect a plaque in front of Perry Pavilion in their memory. His name will now be added to the plaque.
Edward then began work on his most ambitious dream: the Douglas sculpture garden. Armed only with determination, his unique brand of charm and an absolute conviction in his cause, he achieved the near impossible. One by one, he convinced world-renowned sculptors to donate their works to the Douglas, so that all patients, staff and visitors could enjoy a haven of beauty and peace. The garden, which opened in 2001 now holds 20 sculptures and is an extraordinary legacy.

Last fall, when Edward became too ill to continue his work on the sculpture garden, his spirits were buoyed by the news that the sculpture garden would be officially recognized by the city of Montréal as a cultural site. Edward passed away peacefully on January 24, 2009.

It was a privilege to know Edward Cohen and to work with him on many occasions. On behalf of the Douglas community, I extend my deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. His selflessness, generous spirit, and dedication to the work of the Douglas have inspired us all.

Jacques Hendlisz, Director General