We know there's a special story about the skateboard company that you've chosen to feature in your photos. Can you tell us more?
"The skateboard in the photo is made by a company called Mosaic Skateboards. That company was started by a friend of mine named Ryan McKellar, who was a double-lung transplant recipient with cystic fibrosis. He was a Vancouver skate legend, photographer and a really good friend. I got about three or four skateboards from him, and I've loved them ever since.
We actually built a halfpipe here in Powell River that I named the "Ryan McKellar Memorial Ramp". Sadly, Ryan died waiting for a second transplant. So those skateboards will mean so much to me for the rest of my life. They will be well used by me and I'm happy to say that my daughter Emily rides one too – and she's only three!"
Tell us about your relationship with Emily and what it means to be a father.
"Emily. What can I say? I love her with all my heart. Being her daddy is an amazing gift.
Every morning when I have coffee, she sits on my lap and we talk about life. Usually it involves her "great ideas" for the day. She always asks to ride the ramp we built. I can't imagine life without her and I'm so excited that she gets to be a part of this journey with BC Transplant."
What other hobbies can you enjoy now post-transplant?
"My favorite hobby is motorcycle riding and I picked that up post-transplant. It's amazing and I love it. I also collect vintage BMX bikes and have always enjoyed reading and learning."
You have been a part of three campaigns with BC Transplant, what has this journey meant for you? Reflect on your health journey and what's changed over the years.
"The first campaign I was a part of was with Eva Markvoort. She was a lifelong friend through the cystic fibrosis community. She was also a double-lung transplant recipient, and she also died waiting for a second life-saving transplant. She invited me to be a part of a project she was doing and it resulted in some amazing artwork that to this day, still hangs at the transplant clinic. Through that, I was able to become a part of the BC transplant campaigns and many other events. I feel like it gave me a purpose, something to give back to, and hopefully it helps other people. It was such a fun time for me! Then my wife Megan got involved too, and it became such a joy that we just couldn't wait until the next event we could be involved with."
You've been a long time volunteer with BC Transplant, what do you love most being involved as an organ donation advocate?
"First off, volunteering will change your life. It totally changed mine and I'd recommend it to everyone. The thing I love most about volunteering for BCT is watching others learn about the importance of registering as an organ donor. I've spoken to countless people about it. Everyone was always so happy to learn about, and realize they could save lives too!"
Can you share some memorable/impactful moments of volunteering with us over the years?
"It's really hard to pin down one moment in particular that was memorable because there are so many. I think being a part of the donor medal ceremony really stuck in my heart. It was so emotional and so powerful! I bonded with so many people during those ceremonies. BC Transplant has helped to shape my life post-transplant and I've met so many people I can call my friends and family, and it's all because of volunteering."