Interesting Vancouver Presents—a series of interviews with ordinary Vancouverites leading extraordinary lives, has just released its fourth episode. This episode finds IV Presents host, David Swanson, in conversation with #IV14 speaker and paramedic, Jamie D. Grant.
Grant always had a hard life growing up. He’s worked a plethora of jobs from McDonald’s to the airport to being a bike courier. It wasn’t until Grant saw a photo by Gregory Colbert, a renowned black and white photography that depicts peaceful interactions between animals and humans, that he realized he was drowning in his own life. And we all have that moment when we realize that life is precious—this was even more apparent after Grant saved a person’s life, when he decided to become a paramedic.
A paramedic’s life is fraught with stress, and working the Downtown Eastside (DTES) of Vancouver would cause anyone to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Riding through the DTES, Grant is exposed to a lot of heartbreaking situations, and dangerous situations, but he never lost his spark. And though he has the ability to help people fix their lives, he’s unable to do it for himself. Grant has a rare and fatal disease called Hereditary Angioedema (HAE), an inherited disease that brings on severe and painful attacks of swelling which can last from 24-72 hours. It has taught him to not take life for granted, to appreciate what we all have and he wants to help people enjoy what they have in their life.
The Interesting Vancouver team is hard at work finalizing plans for the 2016 edition scheduled for later this year. Check out our Interesting Vancouver website to stay in the loop.