From cardiac nightmare to recovery miracle: David's incredible story

A routine golf day turned out to be a life-changing event for David Randall. While on the course, David's wife Michelle noticed he had started to turn grey. He was not feeling well and agreed to go to the hospital, so they prepared to leave. Within minutes, David went into cardiac arrest. A nearby off-duty nurse and a friend with CPR training rushed to his aid.

Nothing was working. "They couldn't find a pulse," says David. "They took me to the hospital, but it was beyond a heart attack." He also suffered severe head trauma when he fell.

David was put into a medically-induced coma. Michelle was told there was a 50/50 chance he would make it through the night. By morning, she learned he had stabilized. Still unconscious, there was no way of telling if David had suffered permanent damage and doctors advised his family about the possibility of cognitive impairment. Fighting the odds once again, he recognized everyone as soon as he woke.

Within a day, David was transferred to Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital where he met Dr. Grace Chua. "She really is a saving Grace," David jokes. "I was a lucky guy. There was significant damage to both sides of my heart. I started medication and a month later, I was home and able to walk around the block." That was also the last day he smoked a cigarette.

He was advised to then attend Mackenzie Health's Cardiovascular Rehabilitation program.

"That was the turning point for me," says David. "I was there for 13 months, where the average person is usually six. But I stuck with it because I had to, and they helped me get to where I am now. Cardiac rehab allowed me to take my life back." David still visits Mackenzie Health for routine appointments. He appreciates the sense of community there for people who have had similar experiences.

"You hear about heart attacks all the time," says David. "But until you've had one, you have no idea how many people come through Mackenzie Health's doors and how much the cardiac rehab can help. I'm very grateful for them. To have a facility of that quality in the community, and especially how quickly I got to it, was life-changing."

"You can be here one day and possibly gone the next. I became a lot more grateful for what I have and I now hold my friends and family a little closer and tighter."