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46 | CAA MAGAZINE PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY MEMBERS insider: community board member. For an association dedicated to promoting safe travel, it's a natural fit. CAA's support helps people like Steve Johnston, 55, a patient in Sudbury, Ontario, who was diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer in November 2015. Following surgery, chemotherapy and radiation in Sudbury, doctors told Steve they'd done all they could. The life expectancy for patients with his type of cancer is about 18 months. "The doctors told me to go live my life," Steve says. But he and his wife, Cathy, began researching alternative treatments. "My wife found a trial for a drug at O‡awa Civic Hospital. We contacted them, and they said I was a good candidate," Steve recalls. In October 2016, the couple made the long six-hour drive to the national capital, where doctors did an MRI. They returned in December for another checkup. That Christmas, Steve and Cathy heard about Hope Air. "We sent in all the paperwork, and within one to two weeks, we were chosen as a candidate," Steve says. "We've probably flown with them six or seven times, on Porter Airlines." For the Johnstons, the travel arrangements were a relief. Instead of an arduous journey by car, they could cut their door-to-door travel time by more than half. Doctors in O‡awa eventually told Steve his cancer was stable and he didn't need to continue to participate in the medical trial. What had appeared to be tumour regrowth was identified as swelling caused by radiation—a diagnosis made possible by an advanced MRI machine not available in Sudbury. He's now being followed by a hospital in Sudbury, but Steve and Cathy won't forget their experience with Hope Air. "I don't know how to put the importance into words," Steve says. To pay it forward, Steve and Cathy tell others about Hope Air and the valuable work they do. "They take care of the travel so you can just worry about ge‡ing be‡er," Steve says. Helping Those in Need How Hope Air gets Canadians in financial need to medical appointments far from home by LISA GORDON T HREE IN 10 CANADIANS will need to see a medical specialist at some point in their lives. But what happens when those people live far away from specialized health care facilities? Enter Hope Air, the only national charity that helps Canadians in financial need who must travel great distances for medical care by providing free travel and accommodations. Since it was founded in 1986, Hope Air has assisted with more than 150,000 travel arrangements across Canada. CAA Club Group has been a proud supporter of Hope Air since 2016. In fact, the association's annual charity golf tournament has funded more than 1,400 patient flights. The relationship was forged through CAA Club Group President and CEO Jay Woo, who volunteers as a Hope Air pilot and Steve and Cathy Johnston, from Sudbury, Ontario, have flown to Oawa several times for Steve's brain cancer treatments

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