Connect with us
[bsa_pro_ad_space id=12]

Health

Dave Williams flew to space but faced biggest challenges on solid ground

Published

on

If you like this, share it!




  • MONTREAL — As he was training in 2004 for his second space flight to help in the construction of the International Space Station, a routine visit to the doctor almost cut short Dave Williams’ career as an astronaut.

    Williams, a physician himself, had gone for his annual checkup to maintain his flight status as an astronaut and pilot when a blood test revealed he had prostate cancer.

    He was three years away from the planned 2007 space station mission, but suddenly everything was on hold.

    Williams titles his new memoir, ‘Defying Limits – Lessons from the Edge of the Universe’, but the book reveals it was back on Earth that he faced some of his greatest challenges.

    “I sort of forgot that I was a doctor when I heard the news. All of a sudden I had the feeling that ‘Oh, my goodness, I’ve got cancer, I’m going to die’,” Williams, 64, told The Canadian Press.

    “Fortunately, the rational part of me sort of kicked in, and I started to approach this as I would if I was another patient — even though the patient was myself.”

    NASA found a surgeon for Williams at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and he had his prostate removed in August 2004.

    While performing the procedure, doctors discovered the tumour had spread, but they were able to get it all. Williams was given the green light to continue training for his space voyage.

    The cancer scare came the year after another trauma for Williams. In February 2003, the U.S. space shuttle Columbia broke up while returning to Earth, killing seven astronauts — all close friends of Williams.

    He took part in recovery efforts searching for debris, and recounting that chapter of his life was tough.

    “I’d write a couple of paragraphs and then I’d quite literally have to take a break and go do something else and come back to continue writing,” he said. “It was a very sad time for us in the program.”

    During his 2007 space station visit, Williams helped installed a truss on the orbiting laboratory and performed a Canadian record of three spacewalks.

    It was during his second sortie, perched on the Canadarm, that he gazed down at Earth awestruck. He realized he was “looking at this incredible four-and-a-half-billion-year-old planet upon which the entire history of the human species had taken place,” he said in the interview.

    His first space mission was on board the shuttle Columbia in April, 1998 — the same orbiter that blew up five years later. During the 16-day flight, while serving as a mission specialist, Williams carried out neuroscience experiments that focused on the effects of microgravity on the brain and nervous system.

    Born in Saskatoon, Williams grew up in Montreal. His dream of becoming an astronaut began just before his seventh birthday when he watched on a black-and-white TV as astronaut Alan Shepard took a sub-orbital flight in May 1961, becoming the first American in space.

    His book recounts setbacks large and small that he experienced as he pursued his dream. In Grade 5, while living in suburban Montreal, he was struck by a car on his bike while headed to school but escaped without serious injury. Later as a teenager in the Royal Canadian Army cadets, he was thrown from a military truck when it overturned, but he managed to walk away with some scrapes and aches.

    A more sobering moment came during the Canadian Space Agency’s astronaut selection process in 1992, when an eye exam revealed Williams had a degenerative condition of the retina. The degeneration turned out to be mild, and the Canadian Space Agency selected Williams and three others to join the astronaut corps.

    Williams met his wife Cathy, who went on to become an airline pilot, at a swimming pool in a Montreal suburb in 1978. 

    He recounts how despite his busy schedule, he tried to stay in touch, even at the most improbable moments. During his first space trip, Williams sent a message directly to his wife’s Air Canada cockpit while she was co-piloting a flight between Montreal and Toronto.

    “We are having a great time orbiting the Earth at Mach 25 much higher than flight levels,” it read. “Please extend best wishes … to the captain, the crew and all passengers.”

    The captain flicked on the plane’s PA system and read the message to the entire plane, prompting a round of applause.

    Williams has a daughter Olivia and a son Evan as well as a nephew Theo, who came to live with the family after losing both of his parents to cancer. Evan was diagnosed with Down syndrome when he was born in 1994, but for the Canadian astronaut it was just another personal challenge.

    “Life is full of adversity, and I don’t think I’m unique in that way,” Williams said in the interview.

    “I think most people in their lives have had challenges at one point or another, and I think it is how we respond to those challenges that, in part, brings meaning to our life.”

    The book, which was released Oct. 30, is published by Simon and Schuster Canada.

    Peter Rakobowchuk, The Canadian Press


    If you like this, share it!

    Community

    Watch: Buy a Red Deer Hospital Lottery ticket and change the way meds are dispensed at Red Deer Regional

    Published

    on

    If you like this, share it!




  • Red Deer Hospital Lottery 2019 Cause:  Pyxis Medstations

    Pyxis Medstations are automated medication dispensing units with numerous electronic features to ensure safety, accuracy and efficiency.

    In our hospital, over 1,000 new medication orders are written by prescribers and processed every day. 13,000 units of medication are dispensed on the care areas every 24 hours. The process for dispensing this medication is paper-based and manual with nurses selecting medication from a patient drawer or from the unit supply.

    Patient safety is of utmost concern in our hospital, and the Pyxis system will help ensure the best possible healthcare for Central Albertans. Automated medication dispensing will ensure possible allergies, drug interactions, and duplicates in therapy are reviewed before medication is given, reduce the chances of a patient receiving the wrong medication, only allow access to medications approved for that patient, warn if a medication is selected too early or too late for a patient, provide additional instruction and information on medications to healthcare providers, enhance communication between the pharmacy and nursing.

    The technology will further ensure medication dispensing safety with ‘bedside medication verification’. Once a medication has been selected for a patient, the nurse will scan the patient file at the bedside before administering the medication to that patient.2019 proceeds will be used to purchase Pyxis Medstations for use in emergency, the intensive care unit, operating room, recovery room, unit 22 (cardiology), & other critical care areas at the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.

    Red Deer Hospital Lottery  Proceeds from the Lottery have exceeded $8.5 million since its inception; the lottery has become a huge success and has plenty to celebrate!

    For a fifth exciting year we are proud to partner with Sorento Custom Homes for the 2019 Red Deer Hospital Lottery Dream Home!

    The 2019 Red Deer Hospital Lottery Dream Home, designed by Sorento Custom Homes, makes a strong statement of luxury and design. This $840,000 bungalow features 3,110 sq ft of developed living space. It’s a perfect family home with 3 bedrooms, 2 1⁄2 baths, and a master chef kitchen with adjoining butler pantry. You’ll love the high vaulted ceilings in the main living space, accented with wood beams & two large skylights, plus a full height brick fireplace. Enjoy the convenience of the 5 piece ensuite, connecting to a large walk-in closet and adjoining laundry room. Finish off this beautiful unique home with an impressive wet bar, and $40,000 worth of gorgeous furnishing provided by The Brick. Our Dream Home is located in the community of Laredo on the south east corner of Red Deer.

    There are 100 prizes to be won valued at more than $1.1 million. This year’s Early Bird prize is: $25,000 Cash!

    Don’t forget the MegaBucks 50 Raffle with a minimum cash payout of $100,000. Last year’s winner took home $250,000!
    2019 proceeds will be used to purchase Pyxis Medstations, automated medication dispensing units with numerous electronic features to ensure safety for patients at the Red Deer hospital, and accuracy and efficiency for hospital staff.

    Tickets for the Lottery are $25 each, 5 for $100 or 15 for $250 Call 403.340.1878 or toll-free at 1.877.808.9005.

    Mega Bucks 50 tickets are $10 each, 10 for $25, and 25 for $50. To order online or for more details visit reddeerhospitallottery.ca

    The show home is open to the public beginning March 15 at 1pm. Show home hours are March 15 – March 31, Daily 1-5 p.m.; Starting April 1, Friday – Sunday 1-5 p.m. Closed Good Friday, open Easter Sunday.

    Early Bird cutoff is 11pm May 27, 2019. Final Ticket Sales cutoff is 11 pm June 24, 2019.

     


    If you like this, share it!
    Continue Reading

    Health

    Calgary woman convicted in son’s strep death granted full parole

    Published

    on

    If you like this, share it!




  • CALGARY — A Calgary woman whose son died after she failed to take him to the doctor for a strep infection has been granted full parole.

    Tamara Lovett, who is 50, was convicted in 2017 of criminal negligence causing death and was sentenced to three years in prison.

    She was granted day parole last June after serving eight months of her sentence.

    Lovett, who treated her son with dandelion tea and oil of oregano, told a Parole Board of Canada hearing in Calgary this morning that she grieves every day and would like to turn back the clock.

    The board said that Lovett’s views on western medicine are still not totally in line with the rest of society, but she has made progress and is a minimal risk.

    She has been living in a halfway house but will now be allowed to move into an apartment with a roommate.

    Lovett must continue to receive counselling and is not allowed to be responsible for the care of anyone under the age of 18 or for anyone in a vulnerable position.

     

    Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press



    If you like this, share it!
    Continue Reading

    march, 2019

    fri8mar - 30aprmar 85:30 pmapr 30Real Estate Dinner Theatre5:30 pm - (april 30) 10:00 pm

    sat23mar10:00 am- 4:00 pmLet Them Be Little Market10:00 am - 4:00 pm

    sat23mar1:00 pm- 4:00 pmMAGSaturday @ the MuseumMAGnificent Saturdays welcomes all ages and abilities to participate in a fun art project every week! 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    sat23mar8:00 pm- 10:30 pmA Night at the Movies8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

    sat23mar8:00 pm- 8:00 pmA Night at the Movies8:00 pm - 8:00 pm

    sat30mar - 31mar 3010:00 ammar 319th Annual Central Alberta Family Expo10:00 am - 5:00 pm (31)

    sat30mar1:00 pm- 4:00 pmMAGSaturday @ the MuseumMAGnificent Saturdays welcomes all ages and abilities to participate in a fun art project every week! 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    Trending

    X