Propionic Acidemia

Jan 16, 1985 – Dec 16, 2012

For years we have been receiving your newsletter, and each time reading the stories of families.

We lost our youngest son, Christopher to complications from PA almost twenty years ago. The day we buried Christopher we discovered that our oldest, Matthew, also had PA. Through the years he lived with courage, grace and a smile.

His PA lead to cardiomyopathy,
which eventually lead to heart failure. While suffering the insult of PA, and heart failure and being on the heart transplant list, he managed to complete his degree in Industrial Engineering at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia and got his engineer’s Iron Ring.


Christopher Michael

Propionic Acidemia

June 4, 1989 -Aug 14, 1993

his summer his appendix burst which lead to catastrophic results. He had a Left Ventricular Assist Device implanted and slowly clawed his way through 3 months in hospital. He was waiting for a new heart. Sadly one never came; he died from a cerebral hemorrhage on Dec. 16, 2012.

All these years of receiving the newsletter, I always was afraid to write of Matthew, thinking that we were doing ok, that I could
not share his successes with the other parents, because we were not going to lose. Hubris.
Matthew had always wanted to go on an expedition with his Cardiologist, Dr. Heather Ross of the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre at Toronto General Hospital.

Though he could not go with Dr. Ross on her South Pole 2013, she did take his Iron Ring with her. Dr. Ross’ inspiration for this trek was Matthew. Read about her emotional blog post here:

This is a picture of the marker at the South Pole. Notice Matthew’s engineer’s Iron Ring on the top of the sphere. The ring was carried to the South Pole by his doctor, Dr. Heather Ross of the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, of the Toronto General Hospital. Dr. Ross and the team made the trip to the South Pole to bring awareness to the need for additional research in heart failure and heart transplant, as well as the need to to register to be an organ donor not only in Canada but throughout the world. Had a heart been available last September, October, November or December, Matthew may have survived to still be with us today.

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