Arthur Burkholder has lived in Markham all his life. He was born into a four-generation family who resided on the south side of Highway 7, across the road from the site that would eventually become Oak Valley Health’s Markham Stouffville Hospital (MSH).
When Arthur and his late wife, Doreen, built their home on a vacant property 50 years ago, never did they imagine that they would be conveniently located just three minutes away from their local hospital.
Arthur recounts the many occasions when MSH has been the cornerstone for his family. His father was one of the first patients to have a transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) procedure performed at MSH due to an enlarged prostate. His family celebrated the birth of their first grandchild and, both of Arthur’s parents received palliative care and comfort at the end of their lives, all at MSH.
“My family was able to be with them in privacy and we really appreciated that,” adds Arthur.
Since the hospital opened its doors in 1990, Doreen had been seen 163 times for varying reasons and conditions. She was cared for in the intensive care unit twice and admitted five times for various lengths of stay until her final days in 2019.
“We were so appreciative of the care and the way the staff looked after her, and after us,” says Arthur.
Like his dad, Arthur also required a TURP procedure in the summer of 2019, and through that surgery, his urologist, Dr. Adeel Sheikh, discovered cancerous cells. Arthur was diagnosed later that same year with prostate cancer. Thankfully, his health care team caught the cancer in its early stages and today Arthur appears to be cancer free.
Then, at the beginning of this year, Arthur had total hip replacement surgery at MSH with orthopaedic surgeon, Dr. Syed Haider.
“I was cared for competently and compassionately by Dr. Haider and his staff,” says Arthur. “I walked out of the hospital the same day and had a good experience.”
It was so good that his recovery and rehabilitation has been quick and steady. He used a two-wheeled walker for just one day; and most of the time Arthur already goes about his days without much of a hint that he even had surgery.
Arthur and his family have always understood that MSH depends on the generous support of the community to fund hospital equipment and technology advancements that the government can’t fund. Their dedication dates back to the 80s when they initially supported the fundraising for a new hospital in Markham. And their generosity has not stopped there.
“Over the years, we saw how valuable a service Markham Stouffville Hospital was, providing to the community and we wanted to demonstrate our appreciation. And we did that by naming Markham Stouffville Hospital in our wills,” says Arthur.
May is Leave a Legacy month in Canada, a time to highlight the impact of providing a charitable contribution that ensures a lifetime of care for our growing, aging, and diverse community. Naming MSH Foundation in your will is a powerful act of giving.
Photo: Arthur (Art) Burkholder in front of his Markham home of 50 years.