Niagara At Large Publisher/Reporter Suffers Health Setback

NAL Thanks You for Your Continued Support and Patience As We Fight Our Way Back

A Message from Niagara at Large Publisher and Reporter Doug Draper

Posted January 2nd, 2022 on Niagara At Large

From a Hospital Bed in Niagara, Ontario

Doug Draper during younger, healthier times. In St. Catharines Standard newroom, circa early1980s

A few interesting things happened to me on the days leading up to Christmas Day and New Year’s.

It began with a nagging chest cough that would not go away in spite of how many over the shelf cough suppressant products I threw its way. Congestion grew in my chest and I found myself feeling weak to a point where I had to find a place to sit and catch my breath, even after doing something as simple as taking the recycling bins from a backyard shed at home to curbside.

Then, as time went by, my chest began convulsing when I went to bed at night, leaving me fighting for air to a point where I feared I was going to have a heart attack.

The first thing that crossed my mind was COVID. But then why me when I had hardly been out anywhere since the pandemic began in early 2020, and since my wife and I had been vaccinated with both shots of the Moderna last spring, and since we both received the Pfizer booster in the first week of this past December.

If the symptoms I was now suffering were because of COVID, I thought, I will never hear the end of it from people I have been badgering on Niagara At Large to get the vaccine for their sake and for the sake of everyone around them.

But it wasn’t COVID that I had.

With the gasping for air frightening me enough to finally ask my wife two days after Christmas to call for an ambulance, the paramedics were able to figure out the real problem before we even got to the great big hospital out in west St. Catharines. It was congenital heart failure manifested, in my case, by a heart that was beating so rapidly, it seemed about to explode.

In fact the COVID test done on me shortly after my arrival at the hospital turned out to be negative which is one of the few positive things I can say about the state of my health over the past two or three week.

At the moment, my future prognosis remains an open question and all I am desperately wanting to do right now is go home to my wife, daughter and our cat Alice.

NAL will try to provide you with updates.

  • Doug Draper, Niagara At Large

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35 responses to “Niagara At Large Publisher/Reporter Suffers Health Setback

  1. Doug: I know a lot of people will have you in their thoughts while we wait for word you’ve recovered. You are a treasured member of our community and we are all hoping you get well and get home as soon as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. georgemarshall1gmailcom

    Just reading about your medical status and wanted to wish you well and good health as soon as possible..I remain both a fan and a friend. If I can be of any help at all you know how to get me……George Marshall

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Take care of yourself Doug. Direct your fighting spirit towards getting better. Before you know it you’ll be trotting out and back with the recycling bins. All the best and sending get well vibes your way.

    Like

  4. Doug, I am so sorry to hear of your health issues. I wish all the best to you and your family.
    Your publishing, whether here or in the Standard, has taught me so much about local issues over the years.
    I will be thinking of you and hoping for your recovery.

    Get Outlook for Android

    ________________________________

    Like

  5. Nathalie Bibeau

    Doug: I am so sorry to hear this. I will be thinking of you over the coming days and weeks and hoping you find your way back to good health. You are a clear-eyed, constant voice in Niagara and I have the utmost respect for your courage and steadfast commitment to your craft and community.

    Like

  6. Sorry to hear of your heart condition and hospitalization. I myself suffered from a rapid heart beat and atrial fibrillation caused by myocarditis almost 40 years ago. The medical knowledge and technology available now are much better over the intervening years, and you are under constant care right now in a hospital. Hopefully you will be discharged soon … You are too good a man to keep down. Rest and recover, Niagara needs you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hey Doug! I’m so sorry to hear about your health struggles! Hang in there, Buddy, and take care of yourself!

    Like

  8. Brigitte Bonner

    So sorry to hear about your health problems Doug. I’m wishing you a speedy recovery.

    Like

  9. Doug, I’ve enjoyed – and continue to enjoy – your work since we were “competitors” – me at CHSC radio and you at the Standard. Always fair, impeccably accurate and well-researched – traits you maintain to this day. Get well soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Good luck, Doug. Take care of yourself. Hope you are home soon.

    Like

  11. Cath Ens-Hurwood

    just get well!

    Like

  12. Doug,hopefully things are slowing down and you are hanging tuff..seems quirky and hopefully a simple fix..defib etc. Mick and Steve

    Like

  13. In reading your note Doug, the word stress came immediately to mind! Hopefully you’ll be home and on the mend soon. But as you recover get that stress word out of your life. This may be difficult as you have so many of our community issues (and the world’s) on your mind, and have advocated, sometimes vehemently, for immediate progressive environmental changes So get well, and stay well in the new year and for many years to come!! Gracia

    Liked by 1 person

  14. How very scary for you — and for us, too, your loyal readership! I’m very glad to learn that you’re getting the right medical attention, and I wish you a full and speedy recovery. I hope you know how important you are to us all — take good care of yourself, Doug, and may 2022 bring you better health.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. So glad you made it to the hospital in time for a proper diagnosis. Hopefully your recovery is swift and you’ll feel back to normal soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I just read about this, Doug. I hope the talented medical staff at Niagara Health fix you up as good as new soon so you can get home and relax.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Kathleen (Kay) Annable

    Hope for a healthy recuperation and a feeling of wellness in the near future for you.

    Like

  18. All the best on your recovery & appropriate treatment going forward.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Hope you feel better real soon Doug! My thoughts and prayers are with you.
    From a former Standard employee who worked in Advertising while you were there.

    Like

  20. Hi Doug. So sorry to hear about your health problems. I’m wishing you a speedy recovery and hope you will be home with your family soon.

    Like

  21. Wishing you all fbs best, Doug. I’ll be thinking of you, knowing you will pull through this. Stay strong!

    Like

  22. Robert Milenkoff

    Sorry to hear of your health issues Doug and I wish you a speedy recovery. Take care.

    Like

  23. Hope your condition improves Doug and in the meantime follow doctor’s and wife’s orders.

    Like

  24. I hope you recover and feelbetter soon Doug.

    Like

  25. Sorry to hear the news of your recent heath issues. Hoping everything will sort out and wishing you a full and speedy recovery.

    Like

  26. Caroline Misener

    Wishing you timely treatment and a quick recovery while you learn to live with your new health concerns. All the best.

    Like

    • Doug
      Sorry to learn of your heart problems. I do wish you a strong recovery and a return to home soon. Your voice is much appreciated but having you back in better health matters more. I will pray for you.
      Get well.
      Gary Page

      Like

  27. Doug
    So sorry to hear about this health issue. We are hoping for a speedy recovery and a return to good health. You are the voice of reason and honesty in this area.
    Jim Armstrong

    Like

  28. Speedy recovery, Doug. Enjoy a Happy, Healthier, Prosperous New Year

    Like

  29. Get well soon Doug. I know my mom Margherita up there is wishing yiu the same!
    Take care.
    Robin Howe

    Like

  30. A few common threads leapt out –
    – You are MUCH admired!
    -You need to chill a bit and get rid of some of the stress!
    – Listen to the medical staff!
    – Do what you’re told and

    GET WELL SOON! 💖

    Like

  31. Our best wishes for brighter days ahead and a speedy recovery,
    Helen Staal & Peter Ramm

    Like

  32. Get well soon Doug! How frightening, but good to hear that you’re getting excellent care!!!

    Like

  33. Hey Doug …just let some of us carry the stress for you for a while. You have always been there and such a good friend.
    Bill

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Doug, I sincerely hope that you are taking a break from social media — ALL media, in fact — at this time, because what’s going on isn’t good for anyone’s health, let alone yours. So please take as long as you need, because you have no idea how much we miss your voice.

    Like

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