Ernest G. Shadid, MD, passed away on September 23, 2020, at the age of 90. He was born in Elk City, Oklahoma, to George and Nerose Shadid on December 26, 1929, joining his five sisters.
Dr. Shadid developed an interest in human behavior at an early age, for which he remained intrigued his entire life. This curiosity led him to pursue a degree in Psychology, graduating from the University of Oklahoma in 1950. He then enrolled in and obtained a medical degree from the University of Oklahoma School of Medicine. In his desire to deepen his knowledge regarding human behavior, he entered into a psychiatric residency-training program at the Menninger School of Psychiatry in Topeka, Kansas. After one year, he was drafted into the Air Force and was assigned to the U.S. Air Force Mental Hygiene Clinic at Lackland, Air Force Base, working with WW II veterans. Upon the completion of his service, he finished his psychiatric training at Central State Hospital in Norman, Oklahoma, where he remained, assuming a variety of positions, until his retirement in 2005, most notably, his over 40 year tenure as Director of the Central State Griffin Memorial Hospital’s Psychiatric Residency Training Program. Under his leadership and guidance as residency director, more than 300 psychiatric residents were trained and educated, all who benefitted from his knowledge, mentoring, counsel and expertise in the field of psychiatry. He also maintains the distinction of the longest tenure as a director of a psychiatric residency-training program in the United States. Dr. Shadid was also an Emeritus Fellow in the American College of Psychiatry.
His contributions to mental health in Oklahoma extended beyond his teaching abilities, such as serving as the Chief Medical Officer for the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services for over 40 years. Most importantly, he was known as a compassionate and empathetic practitioner who embraced and advocated for the marginalized especially the mentally ill.
Sonny, as friends and family knew him, married Joyce Cohlmia, and they shared 65 years together until her death in 2018. Together they raised four children, of which three followed in his footsteps becoming psychiatrists.
His wife, Joyce, parents and four sisters preceded him in death. His children survive him: Larry (Cecilia) of Dallas, TX, David (Martha) of Tulsa, OK, Dede Bennett (Greg) of Moore, OK, and Greg (Therese) of South Bend, IN; along with fourteen grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Due to COVID-19, a private family Mass of Christian Burial was held on September 25, 2020, at St. Thomas More University Parish in Norman, followed by interment in St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers the family requests memorials be made to the Donahue-Shadid Psychiatric Alumni Society, P.O. Box 722456, Norman, OK 73070, or St. Thomas More University Parish, 100 Stinson St., Norman, OK 73072.