Posted: March 27th, 2017


DR. DREW GIBB CAHOON, born June 3, 1949 passed away as the result of a motorcycle accident at Lake Mead, Nevada March 21, 2017. Drew was born in Cardston, Alberta, to DeRaunz and Wanda. He is the youngest brother to Louise, Ken, Lynda and Dale. He will be missed by his eternal wife Joanne and his children, Wendy (Jon) Penny and their children Riley, Christopher and Jonah, Amber (David) Edwards and their children Porter, Autumn and Marik, Darren (Erin) and their children Alivia, Halle, Jane and Drew, Jess (Cheryl) and their children Ethan and Hazel, Ashley (Chris) Shurtz and their children Aubrey, Jensen, Carter and Liam. Drew leaves a loving posterity who will miss the adventures and great example of a kind man.

Drew loved people, everyone his friend. He loved being a dentist and spent the last 12 years of his life doing humanitarian dentistry in East Africa. His service to the peoples of Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi has left a legacy of excellence in dentistry and continuing education for dentists and hygienists throughout Africa. He has logged hundreds of thousands of miles and 12 to 16 weeks each year in Africa, persuading and cajoling the stakeholders in the dream to achieve his goals to ensure greater skills for practitioners. He promised all those who accompanied him to Africa that they would witness a miracle a day and they did.

Drew graduated from the University of Alberta and fulfilled service to the Canadian Armed Forces Medical Corps, retiring as a Captain. He practiced dentistry in Three Hills for 20 years and 8 years in Raymond before retiring due to health issues. Many patients lovingly recall his care and generosity as a dentist.

Drew served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Oslo, Norway and learned to love the Scandinavian peoples, returning many times to those choice lands. He has served his church and community with unfailing love. His philosophy of anything worth doing is worth overdoing spilled through his relationships with family, patients, friends and community.

We will celebrate Drew’s life at a memorial service on Wednesday, March 29th at 11:00 a.m. at the LDS church at 4105 Forestry Ave S, Lethbridge, AB. There will be a family and friend gathering at 9:30 a.m., prior to the funeral. Come meet the family on Tuesday evening from 6:30 pm at the Forestry Ave building. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Drew’s African Project made payable to Raymond Rotary Club PO Box 1612, Raymond, AB T0K 2S0.

8 Condolences for “CAHOON, Drew”

  1. Linda Sappington says:

    Shocked and saddened by this tragic loss. Drew was a regular at meetings of the Rotary Club of St. George, UT and will be greatly missed. His passion for work in Uganda was an inspiration to those of us Rotarians dedicated to humanitarian service locally or in the world. I can’t begin to know what you must be feeling, but my thoughts and prayers are with this amazing man’s family and friends, including those other Rotarians who worked alongside him.

  2. Joseph Mugerwa says:

    met my sweet friend 13 years ago in Kampala, Uganda….from then he has been like my father, am who iam now becAuse of drew, he will greatly be missed in east Africa, drew am glad I hugged you before you crossed the boarder to Rwanda, I will always carry you in my heart, lots of love to your family, and from Uganda….I will always love you

  3. Joseph E.Opendi says:

    Dr Drew has been not just a mentor to me but he had become a very dear friend, a father figure and an inspiration. It was amazing watching Dr Drew inspire everyone around him. The passion with which he did what he so loved. It was difficult to be sad in his presence.

    He was with us here in Mbarara Referral hospital and in Mubende in February conducting a course with a team that he led and introducing us to a patient management software that is helping us improve our practice of dentistry, the first one in our public hospitals. This was just to cap an amazing work that he has done; supplying equipment, training staff pioneering outreach programs and many others.

    The wonderful time we had visiting Canada when Dr Drew took 8 of us to different places in Alberta will forever be an experience we’ll look back to with fond memories. The people we met, what we learnt and the experiences we had, all so amazing.

    The news of Dr Drew’s passing was so saddening because we were all looking forward to his next trip in September and many more things especially, with regard to an Institute for the promotion of oral health in Mbarara. These were his last words as we parted in Mbarara town. This event has left a void in our lives. We shall greatly miss his love, leadership, passion, energy and skills in getting things done. I regret that I didn’t get to spend a little more time with him.

    But now that he is gone we are grateful to God and to his family particularly his wife Joanne for letting us share in the life of this wonderful man, and we pray that God will comfort and strengthen his loved ones in this moment and that us all who were inspired by him will do our best to keep alive his dream.

    May his soul rest in Eternal peace

  4. Merilyn Tetz says:

    We are so sorry to hear of Drew’s passing. Sincere condolences from the Tetz family of Three Hills.
    Merilyn, Dena, Melanie and Greg

  5. Neville Wilkins, Three Hills says:

    Hello Joanne,
    I have been involved in people’s lives for over 60 years, and I am still of the realization that when something like Drew’s passing happens, you do a lot of thinking and second-guessing on what to say. I am aware that it is totally inadequate to say that I was shocked and saddened, and yet at the same time, aware of the fact that he is in a better place. I still recall with pleasure the hours I was able to spend with Drew when he was in rehabilitation for his previous accident, while living here in Three Hills. Although we differed on certain issues of doctrine, we were able to build bridges of friendship and mutual faith. I was not at all surprised to read in the Lethbridge obituary that his heart was big enough to take in a good piece of Africa.
    I want to leave you with some verses from the Psalms and the New Testament:
    “Lead me to the Rock that is higher than I; Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God AND the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
    May you sense God’s presence in a very special way at this time.

  6. Wobusobozi John says:

    Your great work at improving dentistry in Hoima will be remembered eternally.
    Wobusobozi John/Hoima Hospital

  7. david babcock dmd says:

    President Cahoon literally changed my life personally, spiritually and professionally. The influence that he and Joanne had on me inspired me to dream bigger, to be bigger. The world is a better place thanks to Drew and Joanne.

  8. Louise Jensen says:

    He was/is my brother. I still miss him so much after all this time and think he will still someday run through our door calling our names. Love to our Joanne and family from Bryce and our family, Ken and Joan’s family, Lynda and Merlin’s family and Dale and Ann’s family. He is still in our thoughts – he and Joanne had the neatest relationship – a marriage we could all emulate and love to have. Missing all the laughter you brought into our lives and the love — Louise

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