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Hifa Debaji



Our hearts are broken today as we share the news that our wonderful mother and grandmother (Sitty) has passed away. She died peacefully with her family by her side. Her love of life, strong spirit and enduring courage will live with us always.

Born in Radville, Sask, Hifa travelled with her parents to Lebanon in 1942. She married Rada Debaji 4 years later and returned to Canada in 1951 with her daughter Jomana and son Emad to settle in Crane Valley, Sask where their son Nehad was born. In 1962, the family moved to Wetaskiwin, Alberta and opened the town's major grocery store, Ray's Tomboy. Hifa also built a network of fashion boutiques in 5 towns across Central Alberta. Their youngest son Mazen was born in Wetaskiwin. After her husband died, the family moved to Edmonton where they continue to reside.

Hifa's sons continued in the grocery business by opening Debaji’s Markets, fresh produce stores in Edmonton. Hifa inspired and guided their work.

Hifa was the anchor and matriarch of her family. Known for her strong character, vibrant personality, kindness, ingenuity, business acumen and active social life, she was a recognized and admired member of each community she lived in. Her cooking and baking were infamous; she loved to play bridge and to laugh and share stories with her family.

Hifa will be greatly missed by her daughter Jomana (Hani) and her sons Nehad (Marilynn) and Mazen (Maureen); her 6 grand daughters, Rakiya, Sara, Aniesa (David), Jenna, Jessica and Annie, whom she cherished; and the many dear friends and extended family who’s lives she touched.

She was predeceased by her husband, Rada; her son, Emad; brothers, Najeeb, Adeeb; sister, Maza and Maza’s husband, Hassan Houssian.

The family wishes to thank Dr. Sabin Shuraw, his assistant Myrna, Dr. Andrew Belch, Dr. Stanley Mah, Dr. Heidi Choi, Dr. Vijay Daniels and the nursing staff at U of A hospital for their exceptional care and compassion.

The family invites you to join them in a memorial service on Thursday, May 21 at 11 a.m. at the Derrick Golf and Winter Club, 3500 – 119 Street NW, Edmonton. If you wish, a donation may be made to the Alberta Cancer Foundation – Myeloma Research.

“And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb. And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then you shall truly dance.” The Prophet by Khalil Gibran

In Loving Memory of
Hifa Debaji
(Maiden: Shibley)
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Funeral Service:
Memorial Service
Thursday, May 21, 2015
11:00 AM
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