To add your appreciation of Louis to this page, please send it to Nicole Kirkpatrick.

"I was shocked to hear the news of Dr. Charland's sudden passing. I took a course with Dr. Charland just this past semester and he was one of the best teachers that I've had since I started my university career. He was always so kind and insightful, both as a professor and as a person and he made sure that all his students were well versed in the scope of his course and beyond. I'm glad that I got the chance to take his course and meet him. While it is heartbreaking to lose such an amazing person and teacher, it is comforting to know that he spent his life doing something he deeply valued. My deepest condolences to Professor Charland’s family and friends. Rest in Peace Dr. Charland. You will be missed."

Sreenija Pappur

"The first class I had taken with Dr. Charland was a course about mental wellbeing and recovery. To this day, I have never seen these concepts framed in such an insightful, profound way. Dr. Charland truly represented the best of what teaching can and should be; a professor who encouraged his students to think for themselves and to approach some of life’s greatest complexities with nuance and compassion. Dr. Charland was as brilliant as he was kind, and he will be missed dearly."

Ashuthi Kanneganti

"I had been inspired by Louis’ work for many years before he made contact with me. He was an incredible man and a wonderful friend – a brilliant mind, so vibrant and full of humour and warmth – also someone so humble and with such generosity of spirit, despite his phenomenal achievements. We became close very quickly and our exchanges have been one of the highlights of my academic career. Louis was overflowing with ideas and excitement in the last months of his life – full of extraordinary creativity, joy, and energy until the end. I had been looking forward so much to hearing his new ideas develop and to working with him – but he leaves behind him an incredible legacy and, amongst the sadness, I feel immensely privileged to have known him as both a scholar and friend."

Tania Gergel

"The news of Louis’ death is devastating. I met him on my very first day as a Masters student at Western in 1985, and we became fast friends. He took me under his wing in my early days as a philosopher, looking out for me and helping me a great deal in my uncertain foray into a new discipline. He was one of the most charismatic and magnetic people I have ever met. He was multi-talented - as well as being a terrific philosopher, he was a gifted poet and musician. He was also hilarious. He once had me laughing so much at a seminar that I had to leave the room! Above all, he was extraordinarily caring and kind. What a loss."

Alan Hajek

“I took a course with Professor Charland this past semester and met with him over Zoom every week to talk about the course material. It was clear that he was passionate about the work that he did, as both a researcher and a teacher. I have never met a professor who cared as much about the wellbeing of his students as Louis Charland, he was an incredibly gentle, kind and supportive soul. I have no doubt that Louis Charland will continue to live on in the hearts of the many people he touched, as although I only knew him for a brief time, I will never forget the impact Professor Charland had on my life.”

Julia Teasdale

"When I first met Louis, he introduced himself to me by noting we had a connection, having both studied at Carleton. This was typical of his empathy and made me feel very welcome in my new department at Western. That concern for others' feelings was always evident, even in his last email to me, the day before he passed, which was to say he hadn't been well but assure me his grading was almost done, so I wouldn't be stressed. So thoughtful, always smiling, always an understanding friend."

Christopher Viger

"During the course on the philosophy of psychiatry, I have come to know Louis as a passionate and great teacher. He was extremely knowledgeable, friendly, and supportive both inside and outside class. I would like to offer my sincere condolences to his family and friends."

Pepijn Al

“Louis was an immensely kind and empathetic person. Those qualities struck me the first time I met him, and on every subsequent occasion on which we interacted. He was also quirky, and I enjoyed a number of conversations about the finest olive oils with him! I will really miss bumping into him on the streets of London and in the corridors of the university. My sincere condolences his family and close friends.”

Jessica du Toit

"I'll always remember Louis Charland's rare combination of academic eminence, strict professional integrity, and sincere personal warmth. He brought his philosophical work into contact with the problems of human life in ways that few philosophers can."

Robert DiSalle

"Louis le chien is how he would always refer to himself with me. Louis was one of the biggest hearted people I’ve ever known. We roamed the streets of Paris together through the night until dawn, talking about cognitive science, philosophy, poetry, life, and love. Louis adored cooking and we made feasts together in Paris, Toronto, and Montreal. We argued about the best way to make spaghetti carbonara (deferring to Marcella Hazan in the end). Louis dedicated one of his poems to me, a poem I’ve long treasured. My condolences to his family, especially to his mother Marguerite, who welcomed me into their home in Paris so many years ago. Louis le chien, je t’adore, bon voyage."

Evan Thompson

"Apart from being an excellent scholar, Louis was an amazingly kind, supportive, and gentle colleague and friend. He always spoke well of people, seeing the best in everyone. I remember being on a dissertation committee with him and being amazed by how gentle, positive, and constructive he was with his questions and feedback. We will miss him."

Angela Mendelovici

"I first met with Louis in Winter 2006, when I studied at Faulty of Law, Western. I applied for a position to be Louis’ research assistant and translator in one of his projects. He introduced me to his then newly wedded wife, Anna. We became very close family friends thereafter. During my last year in law school and the first several years of my practice, Louis, as my mentor and dear friend, supported me to go through some of the most challenging moments in my life. He was kind, wise, considerate but innocent like a child. He always observed the best trait of human beings. He would drop a note to check on me when he was in Australia, Germany or England. He would share with me the wonderful stories of his trips and sabbaticals. My husband and I have had a plan to join him and Anna in their tours after retirement. The plan can never be implemented. I have lost my best friend but very believe that Louis is an angel now looking after each of us."

Yan Wang

"Professor Louis Charland was the most exuberant and life-radiating person I have ever met. I had the pleasure of keeping in touch post-graduation as his email penpal. I will never forget how each email read like poetry, and I am inspired to live with as much intention and reflection as he did. I am so thankful for his enthusiastic encouragement and I will always smile thinking of my artwork hanging in his office. He will be dearly missed."

Megan Davis

"I worked with Professor Charland as a TA during the winter term of 2020. It has been one of the most enriching academic experiences I have had. He was a great teacher but what caught my attention the most was his special care and support to the students. With his kind and gentle personality he succeeded to get the best out of everyone. Prof. Charland gave me the chance to teach a class once a week (my first time teaching at UWO), until I suffered an accident and could not keep doing that. He offered me his total support at every moment and also his friendship. I am very sad about this news. I feel so lucky I had the chance to meet and work with such a wonderful person."

Saul Madueno

"Louis and I took up our first positions at Western the same year, both joint-appointments with Philosophy. Settling into our new home(s) we compared notes along the way in the hallway and from time to time over dinner. Though in the last years our busy lives precluded dinners, he still always had time for a few supportive words when we met by happenchance. Louis was part of our community and will be dearly missed—my heart goes out to his family."

Helen Fielding

"I met Louis in September 2019 in my first week in Canada. In our meeting, Louis broke every pre-conception I had about tenured professors who are famous for exceptional work. He was kind, compassionate, interested in my research, and just a glow of light and positivity that never diminished in future interactions. After taking Louis’ course on Emotions in the Fall of 2019, I continued to seek advice from him as a mentor. He took me under his wing, wholeheartedly extended his friendship to me, recognizing that international students often struggle to create communities abroad. He was passionate about interdisciplinary research, and committed to compassionate mentorship. I fondly remember coffees and croissants with Louis, walks, and long conversations about the passions and wellbeing. I remember Louis’ smile whenever he heard about a new project or idea. I know I will miss him every single day at Western, and that his infectious enthusiasm for new scholarship will guide my work here. To all of us grieving this immense loss, here are some words that Louis was fond of: 'If we can winter this one out, we can summer anywhere' – Seamus Heaney"

Amala Poli

"Louis was a gentle and brilliant soul whom I feel privileged to have been able to call both a colleague and a friend. The tragic news of his sudden death comes as a terrible, sad shock. My heart goes out to Anna and James, and the many others who held him dear."

Tracy Isaacs

"Louis was more than a friend; he was a larger-than life inspiration. For years I looked forward to our monthly lunch dates in which we would solve the problems of the universe. I will miss Louis very much"

Jeff Nisker

"Ce départ brusque et boulversant me rend particulièrement triste. Louis était un collègue special. Sa présence dans le département m'a toujours fait sentir le bienvenue, tant pour le fait que nous pouvions converser dans notre langue maternelle que dans sa façon d'être, à la fois profonde et simplement naturelle. Mes pensées vont à sa famille et ses proches."

Eric Desjardins

"It was my good fortune to know Louis as a mentor and professor. I remember that during our last meeting in person we discussed French absurdist writers, and what a wonderful thing it was to be able to follow these threads in our conversations, through various mutual interests. During the summer that I was writing my thesis he would send me photos from his walks along with comments on my drafts. His generosity and curiosity stay with me but his death is a loss of so much knowledge and talent, and truly human spirit."

Zelda Blair

“Louis was a wonderful friend, a brilliant scholar, a kind and generous human. I had known him through mutual friends since the early 1990s and we quickly became close friends after he was jointly appointed a few years later in Philosophy and Health Studies at Western. We would always speak French during our many chats over coffee or a meal because for Louis, French was the language of the heart. I miss him greatly and my thoughts are with Anna and the rest of his family.”

Jeff Tennant

“I first met Louis in 1998, when I sat on the appointments committee that brought him to Western. Over the next two decades I had the privilege to watch Louis become an eminent scholar who explored the complex areas where health and philosophy intersect, and where passion and reason collide to produce the fundamental elements of our humanity. Louis was a dedicated teacher and supervisor, and his dealings with colleagues were unfailingly directed at the common good. A sad loss for Philosophy, for the Faculty of Arts and Humanities and for the University. My thoughts are with his family.”

Michael Milde

"Louis began his emails to me with “Chère Caro” and signed them “Loulou.” These were the names we had for each other, as friends who first met back in the 1990s. His emails always included kind words for me, even when I became his chair (!). He gave me support, sage advice, insight into research areas that we shared, and above all friendship. I will miss him." 

Carolyn McLeod

“My heart is broken. Louis was there for me during an especially dark period a few years ago. He was such a kind and gentle soul, and so insightful. I walked away from every single encounter with him feeling both a better person and with some new understanding. A remarkable man he was.

I look forward to learning what I can do for his family. Much love to everyone as we grieve this great loss.”

Craig Fox

“I am so so sad to hear this news. I clearly remember the first time I spoke with Louis during my first visit here as a prospective student-- because of how remarkably kind, supportive, and welcoming he was from the beginning. 

What a loss to our community...”

Emily Cichocki

“This is such a shock and so sad. Louis was my master's supervisor, and I recently just took a course with him in the fall term. He was so wonderful and supportive. This is such a loss. Thinking of the Western community as well as his family and friends.

(P.S. A little story to share: After doing my master's summer project with Louis back in 2017, and having read a lot of Karl Jaspers' work during that time, I got a kitten and named him Jasper, in honour of that course)”

Amy MacKinnon

“This is shocking to hear. I took a course with Professor Charland this past Fall. He was a very caring and supportive professor. At the end of the semester, he wished us happy new year and shared some quotes that he thought would help us along our life journey. One quote that struck me was the following by Parker Palmer: 

‘Before you tell your life what you intend to do with it, listen for what it intends to do with you. Before you tell your life what truths and values you have decided to live up to, let your life tell you what truths you embody what values you represent.’

While it is very tragic that Professor Charland passed away so soon and suddenly, it gives me a bit of comfort knowing that Professor Charland spent his life doing what he cared deeply about. 

My deepest condolences to Professor Charland’s family and friends. Knowing how gentle and kind a man he was, I know he will be deeply missed by many. 

Rest In peace Professor Charland”

Jeff He