Dr Tim Cheyne, a British veterinary pathologist who was a long-term resident of Doha, collapsed and died on Saturday (January 19) at the age of 80, leaving his many friends and colleagues shocked at the suddenness of his passing, the result of a massive heart attack.
Dr Tim, as he was affectionately known by everyone, (the official name being Ian Alexander Cheyne) loved this country, which he regarded as home, and lived here for more than three decades. Having spent some years in Bangladesh, where he maintained close ties, he came to Qatar to work as the resident vet and manager on a dairy farm owned by the al-Attiyah family.
The farm, situated not far from Doha Zoo, was a popular venue for school trips and weekend visitors, and Dr Tim enjoyed showing groups around, talking about the care of the cattle and introducing them to his favourite animals.
The majority of the farm workers were from Bangladesh, and his knowledge of their country enabled Dr Tim to form close bonds with many.
After the closure of the dairy farm, Dr Tim, who was already approaching retirement age, declared that he had no intention of giving up work or returning to his native country.
In 1995 he was taken on as veterinarian and laboratory manager at the Umm Qarn stud, founded and owned by HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa al-Thani to breed and race Arabians. He continued to work there until his death. Heart problems and an operation in recent years slowed him down a little, but he was still visiting Umm Qarn on a daily basis and was well known at horse races as the resident vet.
Dr Tim was a daily reader of Gulf Times, and occasionally contributed letters to its correspondence columns, along with his old friend the animal rights campaigner Dr Bill George, who died in June 2002.
His funeral ceremony at the non-Muslim cemetery at Dukhan on Monday, was conducted by the Venerable Canon Bill Schwartz of the Church of the Epiphany in Qatar, and attended by friends and colleagues from Qatar, Bangladesh, India, Britain, Italy, France, the United States and Holland.
Dr Tim will be missed by many, but perhaps most of all by members of the Bangladeshi community here who worked alongside him and loved and revered him as a father-figure who was ever ready to offer help and advice when asked.
Follow us on our social media channels: