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Chief coroner of P.E.I. retiring

Dr. Desmond Colohan is set to retire as the province's chief coroner on March 31. After working 20 years in the health-care system in P.E.I., Colohan will be moving to Ontario with his wife later this year.  ©THE GUARDIAN
Dr. Desmond Colohan is set to retire as the province's chief coroner on March 31. After working 20 years in the health-care system in P.E.I. Colohan will be moving to Ontario with his wife later this year. ©THE GUARDIAN - Jim Day

Dr. Desmond Colohan is retiring after three years as P.E.I.’s chief coroner and a 20-year run working in the province’s health system.

Colohan’s job officially ends March 31. He will be replaced as chief coroner by his predecessor, Dr. Charles Trainor, who held the post for two decades.

Colohan, 71, plans to retire in southern Ontario with his wife, Sandra, where he will continue his passion for golfing, woodworking, painting, reading and cooking. The couple also plan travel to Seattle, Vancouver and California for visits with their three adult children.

Colohan worked as a professional emergency physician in Ontario until he was recruited in 1998 as the first medical director of what was then the Queens Region Health Authority in P.E.I.

In 2006, he did a fellowship in pain medicine at Dalhousie University and went on to run a pain clinic in Charlottetown from 2007 to 2015.

RELATED: P.E.I.'s only full-time pain specialist retiring

While his time as chief coroner was relatively short, Colohan believes plenty was accomplished in his three years as the top coroner.

He notes the Coroner’s Office was able to get a clause in the Coroner’s Act in 2016 which allows coroners to work with non-physicians as part of the coroner’s service.

“We’ve added a layer of investigation,’’ he explains.

He adds the Coroner’s Office is also making progress towards computerizing the data base system similar to a model in use by the medical examiner’s office in Nova Scotia.

Colohan offered plenty of advice, both health and other, through numerous opinion pieces that ran in The Guardian.

He estimates roughly 50 of his columns ran in the newspaper’s opinion pages.

“Writing is a creative way of keeping your brain going,’’ he says.

Jim.Day@TheGuardian.pe.ca

Twitter - GuardianJimDay

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