We Miss You Brent

A year ago this week, I wrote Brent Kinney’s obituary.

It seems like yesterday that he and Elaine and I sat outside on the back patio at their home having dinner and talking about important issues. Despite being ill, tired and in pain, he was interested, engaged and full of opinions about the future of Dubai and the world.

I wish he was here now to share his views – I’m sure he’d have many on the current situation, and they’d be insightful.

When I was in Tokyo recently, Brent’s son David played host to me one night. He entertained me (and three of his young women friends from the fashion industry), for an entire evening – he showed us his favourite haunts and delighted us with his charm.

David and I stayed up talking until the VERY wee hours of the morning, and it struck me then how much like his father he is. I told him so, and he laughed.

In a couple of weeks, Brent’s daughter Meghan is due to give birth to her first child, a baby girl. She and her husband Martin have decided to call her Brent, after the grandfather she will never see in this life, but who will undoubtedly play a huge role – even in absentia – as she grows into the amazing woman that she will surely be. As his namesake, she will be especially loved.

I have no doubt that her grandfather will watch over her, and that she will be precious to him.

Brent’s passing left a huge hole in my friend Elaine’s life. I think she still misses him every hour of every day. There’s no easy way to cope with the loss of a soul mate. I wish there was more I could do to ease her pain and sadness.

Brent was a complex person, and a really good man. He had a heart of gold. I’m glad we were friends, and I feel privileged to have spent a lot of time with him during the last months of his life.

I witnessed the courage, humanity and pragmatism with which he faced death. He wasn’t afraid of dying. And I learned as I shared a small part of his journey at the end, that I didn’t need to feel afraid either. It was a great gift for which I shall always remain thankful.

Brent’s obituary

Born June 17, 1942, Russell, Manitoba; passed away November 17, 2007, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, after a courageous battle with cancer.brent.jpg

Brent was pre-deceased by his father Art. He will be deeply missed by his mother Marie, his wife Elaine, his children Meghan and David, his son-in-law Martin, his extended family, and his friends and colleagues around the world.

Brent was passionate about his profession and his work.

He graduated from the University of Manitoba, Canada, with a B.Sc. (Geology) and an LL B in 1969; he was admitted to the Alberta Bar Association in 1970. During his 38-year career, Brent practiced law in Canada, Qatar, Hong Kong and United Arab Emirates.

He was a member of the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators, the Canadian Bar Association, the Law Society of Alberta, the Law Society of England and Wales and the Law Society of Hong Kong. Recently, he was awarded a Diploma in International Commercial Arbitration, Queen Mary University, England.

Brent’s legal expertise, insightful counsel and business acumen were highly respected by his business associates and colleagues worldwide. He sat on the board of directors of Husky Energy Inc., Dragon Oil plc, Western Copper Corporation, Benchmark Energy Corp., and Sky Petroleum Inc. for which he was also Chief Executive Officer from 2005 to 2007.

Although he devoted a great deal of time to his work, Brent was also a loving husband and father, a trusted advisor and a good friend, who touched the lives of many people in positive ways. He was an avid reader, especially of non-fiction, who continually expanded his knowledge of Middle Eastern and world affairs.

He enjoyed music, and played the saxophone in his youth. He and Elaine travelled extensively and indulged a shared love of art.

Brent appreciated the finer things in life – premium scotch, fine wine, good food, and a day out on the golf course, as well as the company of a wide circle of friends.

Click here to go to www.brentkinney.com, the site David gifted Brent for Christmas 2006.

Click here to make a donation to the Royal Marsden hospital in Brent’s name.