Today I received my mask from Physicians for Human Rights, which I will now wear whenever I am out to honour my dear colleagues and all of our Health Care Heroes, and as always I thank them all. Although to say thank you never seems quite enough it comes from the heart.
Not long after the pandemic started to ravage the world images and stories began to appear in the media and the press of patients on ventilators and health care heroes in PPE. Two such moments led to these two drawings together with their accompanying descriptions:
April 28th – Drawing in the studio today allowed me to spend a few hours in quet reflection on this National Day Of Mourning, a day that perhaps has never been more meaningful, as we remember and honor those who have lost their lives or been injured from their time in the workplace.
I would particularly like to honor the memory of Dr. Lorna Breen, a New York City emergency room doctor, a true hero, and send heartfelt condolences to her family, colleagues and friends.
The drawing was inspired by a photograph taken by Marco Bertorello in the Covid-19 ward of Maria Pia Hospital in Turin.
May 3rd – When the Science of Medicine meets the Art of Medicine to save lives in the COVID unit at Vancouver General Hospital.
ECMO stands for Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation but could also stand for Ever Compassionate Medical Optimism, thanks to the dedication of our frontline healthcare workers epitomized by the caring nurse-specialist portrayed in the picture.
What better way to wish everyone Merry Christmas on Christmas Day than with nature’s “carpenter”, this beautiful pileated woodpecker captured hard at work in the Pacific Spirit Park this week; and a special thank you on this special day to all of our health care and front line heroes who can never be thanked often enough.
Today over 200,000 Americans have died of Covid-19. How heartbreaking that one of them was 28-year-old Dr. Dr. Adeline Fagan an Ob-Gyn resident in Houston Texas who died on September 19th. My thoughts are with her family, colleagues and friends as I send them my heartfelt condolences. I am also thinking of all my healthcare hero colleagues at this time, particularly our own surgical residents who I know must be as deeply saddened as I am today.
“Even in this darkest of times, there are good people willing to share a piece of themselves for the sake of another,” Adeline’s father Brant has written, and he encourages us all, “to be an Adeline.” I can assure him we will.
The letters for this quote from Virgil displayed in the Memorial Hall of the September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York were forged from remnant World Trade Center steel by blacksmith Tom Joyce.
Seeing the crushed remains of Ladder 3 on our moving visit to the museum in 2015 the sacrifice and bravery of those 343 firefighters of the New York City Fire Department who were lost that day together with an additional 68 emergency workers and the 2566 innocent lives they were trying to save has been a lasting memory.
On this 19th anniversary of that terrible day as we remember them all together with those lost at the Pentagon and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, we now have too many other lives to remember and mourn, and for whom those words of Virgil could also have been written.
Six months ago today on March 11th The Director General of the WHO declared that, “COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic.” On that day there were more than 118,000 cases in 114 countries, and 4,291 people who had lost their lives. Today, September 11th 2020, there are 28,412,026 reported cases and 915,088 deaths worldwide.
The First Responder Heroes of 9/11 and those heroes on United Flight 93, together with the Frontline Heroes and Healthcare Workers of today who have also lost and continue to lose their lives saving their fellow citizens are all in our thoughts on this solemn day.