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In early 2020, 70-year-old Linda embarked on an exhilarating two-week cruise along the Nile River in Egypt. Linda never imagined this voyage would leave her fighting for her life in the ICU at Mackenzie Health.

Read Linda's Story

Phyllis Mensah remembers feeling like someone shook her awake. The wife and mother of three was in a deep sleep just after 1 a.m. last July when she suddenly sat bolt upright. "I noticed my phone was off and I had missed calls," she says.

The calls were from her husband, Henry, who often worked late training shift-work clients at his Scarborough gym, Fitness Zion. When Phyllis dialed Henry's cell, she didn't like what she heard.

Read Phyllis Mensah's Story

"Drawing is both an escape from the world and a way to connect to it," says Lindsay Thompson. "It connects me to the world outside my mind and at the same time access my inner thoughts."

For Lindsay Thompson, art has become her therapy - her happy place - as she continues to cope with and manage her mental illness. At the age of 17, Lindsay was diagnosed with schizophrenia and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) at Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital (at the time York Central).

Read Lindsay's Story

9/11 changed everything for nine-year-old Tricia. At school, the little girl imagined planes flying into the building, black smoke billowing and the walls collapsing around her and her big sister, who was also attending school in a nearby classroom.

She felt panic overwhelm her as she worried about her parents being in an accident.

Read Tricia's Story

Growing up, the only thing Sabrina Cannella knew was dance.

At least five days of every week, Sabrina danced competitively. She was in and out of school and when friends asked if she wanted to hang out, her immediate and unequivocal response was always, ‘No, sorry, I have dance.' You can imagine the devastation when the once healthy and active girl had to acknowledge she could no longer do what she loved most.

Read Sabrina's Story

"I wonder if I'll walk again," a thought that went through Hasnain (Hass) Mawji's mind repeatedly in the wake of his devastating stroke in February 2016.

Evidently, for Hass, that fear wasn't enough to stop him from overcoming overwhelming odds when the hemorrhagic stroke left him with a paralyzed leg and arm at the age of 44.

Read Hass's Story

When Mary Granicolo received the devastating diagnosis in August 2016 that she had breast cancer, she was nervous, anxious and afraid.

With no history of breast cancer in her family, Mary wasn't sure what to expect, or how she and her family would get through this.

Read Mary's Story

"The wolf huffed and he puffed, but he couldn't slow Adriana's spirit down."

A cartoon image of the wolf from Little Red Riding Hood is just one of the many images of fictional characters and their messages of inspiration on posters covering the walls of Adriana Miele's patient room at Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital. In fact, not much dims the spirit of this special young woman.

Read Adriana's Story

It was Aug. 24, 2016 when Sheldon was an hour late coming home from his job as a pharmacist and his wife of 34 years grew worried.

"She called my cell phone and I told her I was in the driveway. I think I was sleeping," Sheldon said. "We called an ambulance and good thing we did, within two blocks of the house, my oxygen levels and blood pressure dropped. That's when they put on the sirens."

Read Sheldon's Story

How, Glen McCarthy wondered, did I end up lying immobile on my back, staring at the four walls of a hospital room?

The avid cyclist - who was in prime physical condition at 56 years old - was having trouble comprehending that the night before he had been rushed by paramedics to the Nick and Rosanne Cortellucci Family Emergency at Mackenzie Health, just in time to receive the critical clot-busting drug tPA used to treat embolic or thromboticstrokes.

Read Glen's Story