Decision-making happens throughout our lives. Some decisions we are proud of, others we regret, but they shape our lives. This book examines extraordinary events told to the author by more than 25 remarkable people. The men and women are police officers, firefighters, Canadian military personnel, Emergency Health Services (EHS) attendants, grief counsellors, social workers and ordinary citizens. All have faced adversity. Some have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and that is an important part of their story.
These are stories of hope and healing in the face of regret, challenge, and, in some cases, life and death. One high-ranking Canadian police officer reveals to the author, for the first time publicly, that he has been diagnosed with PTSD. The diagnosis came after years of demanding first responder work both in Canada and abroad, including devastating earthquake and flood recovery and relief efforts.
In another case, a former Ontario paramedic describes how a decision he made at a murder scene left him reeling. He has since started a non-profit organization in the victim’s honour and travelled coast to coast in Canada raising awareness that “Heroes are Human.”
A mother of two describes her split-second decision to drive her car, at high speed, into a ditch alongside a Nova Scotia highway. When her car malfunctioned and a head-on collision was imminent, she acted selflessly to avoid killing or injuring anyone. Her near-death experience and dramatic roadside rescue by two members of the military will haunt readers of this true story.
Underpinning the work is Landry’s interview with the man who accidentally caused the horrific house fire which was the focus of her previous work, The Sixty Second Story. That book pays homage to her late father, Baz Landry, a Canadian Medal of Bravery recipient, and his Halifax firefighting peers. Together they rescued an eight-week-old infant from a burning home in 1978.