It being just a few days before Fathers Day I thought it appropriate to celebrate my Father Don Mercer's (1928 - 2005) Life. Born in rural Ontario in September of 1928 he was a small and not so healthy child. He had what was know then as an enlarged heart. He couldn't run or over exert himself as others and living on the farm this was hard. There were no tests or MRI machines to look at what was actually going on in his chest nor would there have been procedures to really do anything if they had known. Later during open heart surgery in the 1990s they discovered he had a valve that didn't work the way it should but it worked.
A work life in his printing / composing trade seemed rewarding and working on a daily newspaper didn't seem wrought with danger but no one really took into account the lead in the typesetting material, the carbon dust in the air and the chemicals in the ink etc. nor what toll they would take on an already weakened heart not to mention the tobacco smoke both first and second hand. It is a wonder it was not until the late 1980s before the major effects started to show. After a few small heart attacks and a major one at age 59 that then the doctors started to explore the environmental factors involved. The medical people started suggesting - get rid of the carpet - especially from the bedroom where you sleep. Don't be around cigarettes and second hand smoke. Get outside and walk in fresh air. This all seems commonplace today but it was revolutionary thinking 35 years ago.
The Research being done by The Heart and Stroke Foundation and other similar organizations has to be given credit for raising awareness and funds for research. Heart Health, Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke Prevention and Rehabilatation Advancement have come a long way to improve the lives of those effected and in his Memory I hope the little I was able to contribute by joining with my Century 21 Acton Power Team with the Big Bike Ride and raising over $1750. be used to continue to help others live longer healthier lives.