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Healthcare Hero Honours Healthcare Hero

Fort McMurray resident donates kidney to stranger, loses house in wildfire, and still gives gratitude for the work of others.

Generosity comes naturally to Mitchell Weber and Tiffany Walters as does expressing gratitude for the care that others provide.

“We really want to thank Ancy for her gentle and professional care,” began a phone conversation from Mitchell to the Northern Lights Health Foundation. “My wife and I saw your brochure, Honour Your Healthcare Hero, and knew that was exactly how we could ensure that our maternity care nurse received our thanks.”

On February 15th, Talia Weber was born at the Northern Lights Health Centre and parents Mitchell and Tiffany couldn’t be more pleased with the care and attention their labour and delivery received. 

“While we didn’t have an overly difficult birth, there were complications,” continued Mitchell, “So we wanted to express our gratitude; we are so thankful to have had our baby here at the Health Centre.” 

Registered Nurse, Ancy Pazhayattil was pleased that the new parents remembered her and made the phone call to the Health Foundation. “They are extremely kind people,” she said. “I remember them as much as they remember me. Once I heard their story I thought, ‘nothing I could do for this family would be enough’. Their generosity is amazing and I just wanted to help them as much as I could. They have beautiful hearts and I am really glad their birth experience was memorable.” 

Those beautiful hearts have expressed their gratitude in many ways, most recently in the aftermath of last springs’ wildfire. Despite losing their home in Saprae Creek in the fire, the couple threw themselves into the care and feeding of others. Evacuation was spent in Skeleton Lake and they gave as much time as possible volunteering to unload trucks, make meals, and clean at the Millview Recreation Complex in Boyle. 

“Why not step up? People with families and kids can only give so much time,” said Tiffany. “These people helped us, we had to help them.”

Tiffany has stepped up before, in support of an unknown patient at the Stollery Hospital in Edmonton in desperate need of a kidney.

“I had done a bone marrow matching test to support a friend and I wasn’t a match, but I saw a brochure about live kidney donation and thought I would apply.”

Tiffany could not believe when the Stollery called to tell her that due to the rare attributes of her blood, she was the only match in 1.3m people for a particular person awaiting a kidney.

“I was the only chance this person had,” said Tiffany. “How could I live with myself if I didn’t donate?”

With only one kidney, Tiffany’s pregnancy required her to only do light duties at work, she experienced stomach pains, had to go off of all her medications, and was confined to bed rest at times. Baby Talia was born earlier than expected after Tiffany presented to the Non-Stress Clinic at the Health Centre.

“Giving a kidney is a hard choice to make,” said Ancy. “But I think it represents Tiffany’s generous and giving nature.  In my mind she is the Healthcare Hero.  As I said before, these are extremely kind people; they are going to make wonderful parents and I’m glad to hear that Mitchell and Tiffany are putting Talia’s name up on the Wall of Celebration as well. I pass it all the time on my shifts.” 

There are so many ways to express gratitude, thank heroes, record family names, and recognize the generosity of others. At the Northern Lights Health Foundation we accept donations in honour of healthcare service, to recognize loved ones, and to keep our healthcare strong and vital.

For more information on how you can Honour Your Healthcare Hero or any of our programs, please call Nolan at 780-793-7393.                                

Honour Your Hero Today


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Tiffany, Mitchell and Baby Talia.

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Baby Talia.

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Happy and healthy Baby Talia at 1 month old.

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Ancy holding Baby Talia with Tiffany and husband Mitchell.





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