Statement on the Passing of Kurban Nenshi

Post Date: Tuesday, June 19, 2012



Today, on Father’s Day, the day after his 72nd birthday, Kurbanali Hussein Nenshi passed away.

Born in Tanzania in 1940, Kurban was thrust into a leadership role early when his own father passed away. From that moment, Kurban worked tirelessly to ensure that his younger siblings were able to succeed.  He married Noorjah in 1967, and the family came to Canada in 1971, settling in Calgary in 1973. In many ways, his life was ordinary – struggle, sacrifice, giving back to the community, building an amazing future for his family. But he never forgot just how extraordinary this country and this city are, in giving him and so many others amazing opportunity. This, combined with his deep and unshakeable faith, led him to instill the value of service in everyone he touched. Kurban was a compassionate man who loved his family with a fierce devotion.

He leaves behind his loving wife Noorjah, daughter Shaheen , son-in-law Al-Noor and son Naheed, as well as the lights of his life, his granddaughters Asha and Sofia. He also leaves five siblings and their families and innumerable nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews, great-grand nieces, as well as his wife’s family, the Esmails, to whom he was very close. He was pre-deceased by his parents, five other siblings and two much-loved siblings-in-law.

The family would like to thank our amazing extended clan for all their love and support (how do people function without dozens of cousins?).  We would also like to thank all of the many health professionals over the years for the exemplary care they provided, in this system we are blessed to access. We must single out Dr. Nanette Alvarez and her team (especially Diane, Leslie, and Shah) and Dr. Jose Madrilejos, as well as Dr. Gail Ewasechko, all of the staff of Rockyview Unit 58, and the Palliative Care team for their compassion at the end. It was because of this amazing care over the years that Kurban was able to see his children achieve their dreams, and see his granddaughters born, as well as spend special precious time with them.


There will be a private memorial service in the Ismaili Muslim tradition. In lieu of flowers, if so desired, memorial tributes may be made to the Calgary Foundation, referencing the Nenshi Family Charitable Fund, benefiting immigrant youth, people in poverty, and arts and culture in Calgary:  The Calgary Foundation, 700-999 8 Street SW, Calgary AB, T2R 1J5. www.thecalgaryfoundation.org