Canadian sf/f artist whose wife struck by two cars while jogging seeks donations, offers JPEG

Diane Walton sez, "On May 30, Clarice (an Edmonton, Alberta, Canada teacher) was hit and seriously injured by two cars, on her way home from her daily jog. Her husband's post on Facebook describing the accident went viral her amazing recovery has been watched by thousands of well-wishers. Aaron, a talented aboriginal artist, has posted a link for donations toward costs the family will, no doubt incur, during the coming months of Clarice's recovery. On Spec magazine has offered a free download of the issue that feature's Aaron's artwork on the cover. Aaron has provided a free jpg of another work, to thank donors."


    1. Maybe they can’t afford to sue or don’t want to mount a lawsuit? It’s not like she was driving, so there wouldn’t be an insurance company to intervene on her behalf. Unless I seriously misunderstand how this sort of thing works …

      1. I cannot speak for every country but in much of the developed world 3rd party public liability insurance is compulsory for exactly this reason. It seems from a cursory Wiki that in Alberta Canada there is such a requirement, so I really don’t understand why the dude has to raise cashola by himself… Unless the insurance money won’t totally cover rehab?

        1. It can take a good while to get insurance companies to cough up. Don’t donate anything you feel reluctant to give, I say.

          Me, I know the dude, and can speak for his moral rectitude.

  1. He should say what he plans to do with the money that is donated. He hasn’t indicated medical costs (they are Canadian after all), but I could understand other costs they may be incurring or will incur. He should say what those are. Or if he will donate the money somewhere else. Or if it’s just for pain and suffering. Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to him that many of the Americans offering to donate are likely under the assumption that he’s got tens of thousands in hospital bills to deal with. (And maybe he does. I don’t know if Canadian Medicare covers everything in this case. He should say that too.)

    1. Maybe he thinks that people are intellectually capable of figuring out that costs might include lost income, home help, supplies, transportation and all kinds of other things that aren’t covered by insurance.

      1. One province over in BC everything would be covered, except perhaps home help which you could seek to recover fairly easily in negotiations with the insurance company or a lawyer. Although it can drag on, why use public donations when a legal debt is owed?  

        Even if you know more about Alberta than I do, there’s no need to be sanctimonious and derogatory.

        1. Although it can drag on, why use public donations when a legal debt is owed?

          Because it costs a fucking shitload of money to collect on a legal debt. Because the collection of said debt will take a year or so at best, decades at worst. Because launching into legal mode might not be a priority for a family that’s just been devastated by an accident.

          Have you ever negotiated with a hostile insurance company? People end up hiring lawyers to sue their own insurance companies because they won’t cover what they should. And the insurance companies have better lawyers.

          1. This is all assumption based on an American insurance / medical (non) system. No automobile insurance company will fight payment in this case. Notwithstanding, she’s probably completely covered by Medicare, Employment Insurance, Alberta Child Care, Alberta Aids to Daily Living and the Alberta Prescription Drug Program.

    2. Canadian healthcare is pretty darn good if you have money. Her surgeries were likely covered, but most other things wouldn’t be unless they have insurance. Physio, medication, walkers/canes/wheelchairs etc., dental or vision care. That all adds up pretty quickly, especially when the accident causes lost income.

      1. Her surgery isn’t likely to be covered.  It WILL be covered – even if the patient is Métis…  Canada IS, as I regularly like to rub in, a civilized country. (smirk)

        However, there will be lots of other costs (post-hospitalization medicine, equipment, modification at their dwelling, help at home, etc) for years. 

        I’m quite sure that the Paquettes have a large and supportive community (which now includes me) which are ready to help out any way they can.   It’s all part of being human, eh.

        1.  Bonus: you get a personalized email (well, OK, the “To:” field is personalized) message of thanks from Aaron.

    3. He’s kinda busy with the whole tragedy thing right now, so a detailed itemization may not be immediately forthcoming, you know? Don’t give if it disturbs your moral sensibilities.

  2. I came here to find out how she could’ve gotten hit by two cards. Seems like she was hit as a bystander to a 2 car collision. I couldn’t find evidence that both cars hit her though.

  3. This is such a sad story but it opens me up for a rant entitled:

    Don’t exercise near roads.

    There are a litany of reasons not to exercise near roads but the big three are:
    1) The air quality sucks. Would you put fuel diluted with urine into your car?
    2) You risk being killed or injured in exactly this manner
    3) If jogging, you are putting too much strain on your knees, hips and ankles as our bodies are NOT designed to run on hard surfaces.

    Drive to a park. Run laps. It might be more boring but your lungs and joints will be happier and you won’t have to worry about being squished by tons of moving metal. Look how many parks are near where she was hit.

    1. People who live in cities don’t necessarily have cars. They get to the park on foot.

      1. While it’s not always practical to go to a park, what’s the bet her jogging route went past a park? The key is to at least try to minimise the risk by being near roads as little as possible.

        I ride my bike to the park and do laps. Of course I’m near/on roads when I’m going to the park but about 10-20% of my route is on roads and the rest is on bike paths or in parks, meaning I’m probably reducing the danger by a factor of ~5.

  4. um.. I’m Canadian and I can say that everything that she will need to recover is covered by medicare (not like american medicare; this is the name of the system in Canada that covers every citizen/resident etc). 

    I’m from Quebec but I don’t think Alberta’s laws are any different. By ‘everything’ that would mean medicine, walkers, physio, special equipment and everything else that was mentioned  that would be necessary in her rehabilitation. It’s pretty cool though to see people talk about ‘litigation’ pertaining to medical costs when no such thing exists under the medicare system. You can’t actually sue someone for medical bills because the system pays for it. You can sue for other things like pain and suffering I think, but I’m not sure. If by some weird warp in the medicare-time-space continuum you can’t get money for certain things from medicare, you will most likely get the money from the driver’s insurance company. Anyhow… hope she gets well soon.

    1. Will the health care system pay for her lost income? Will the health care system pay for her husband to lose work to care for her? Will the health care system pay for child care?

      1. No, the healthcare system does not cover lost wages or the lost wages of a spouse. Canadian Employment Insurance does. This is for both the person who can’t work due to accident or the spouse through EI’s compassionate care program. I don’t understand what you mean by “pay for the child”. The parents are at home and therefore, care for their own child. If they need to send the child out for daycare, there are almost full subsidies for low income families, families that have stay at home parents and families that have other family members care for their children. I think that about covers  all costs this family will incur.

    2. No, it absolutely will not.

      While she’s in the hospital, everything will be covered. Once she’s out of the hospital, things like assistive devices (canes/walkers/etc) and medicine are not covered; they need to be paid out of pocket unless you have an extended health policy through an insurance company. Alberta covers a physiotherapy assessment and two treatments per year – someone in a situation like this would likely need a lot more than that.

      Our health care system is good, but it benefits no one to make it seem like it’s perfect.

      1. There seems to be a lot of misinformation as to what is covered by medicare. After a quick Google search, it’s clear that Physio is covered for 6 sessions a year in Alberta. if the person qualifies, the therapy is extended. I’m pretty sure this accident victim certainly qualifies. If she doesn’t, the cost is to be paid by the automobile insurance of the driver. As for assisted devices, Alberta Aids to Daily living can help with/pay for that. Specific drugs are also covered by Alberta Health and all Albertans have access to prescription drug benefits through the drug program.

        I didn’t want to turn this into a semantic argument but I think that people are justified in asking these questions seeing as the family has asked for donations that would aid in her recovery. 

        1. Specific drugs are also covered by Alberta Health and all Albertans have access to prescription drug benefits through the drug program.

          And non-prescription drugs? Are those covered? That doesn’t mean that they’re not necessary. I spend $1,000 a year on non-prescription eye drops.

          You seem to be willfully trying to keep people from donating to an accident victim who will certainly have massive expenses that aren’t covered by any government or private insurance.

  5. I’m also a teacher in Alberta, and the health coverage for teachers is absolutely amazing. I’d be surprised if she had to pay anything out of pocket. Also, I don’t know about Edmonton, but in my school division we have 120 (!) sickness days available at full pay, and after that, depending on your coverage, you could recover 70% of income through school insurance and (likely) the rest through EI. 
    So, what costs are we talking about, here? If this story was for an American or Somalian teacher, I’d say sure, they probably need help, but here in the first world, teachers/government employees especially, there’s no need. Smells fishy.

  6. Hello,

    My name is Aaron Paquette.

    It is my wife who was struck by two vehicles that collided in an intersection. I feel obliged to answer some few questions. I will not be following up as there is much to do and I simply won’t have the time.

    First, I was of course not expecting a Facebook update intended for family and friends and colleagues to go viral. The attention has been somewhat disconcerting as you may imagine, and many with long knives have taken advantage of their opportunity to skewer a vulnerable family. That’s fine, It’s part of human nature and we accept that.

    Even more people, millions more, have shown what the human race can be and truly is when given an opportunity: caring, genuine, compassionate, loving, authentic, nurturing, and strong.

    We have received prayers and well wishes from around the globe and it has strengthened us.

    Some people began offering to donate to our long path of healing. I was against it. Like many of you, I have readily given when I have seen a need. We try to make our community better and quietly help others when we can. Accepting assistance in return has been the most difficult lesson of my life but as my wife has reminded me, there are immediate and long term costs that are not covered by public health care or some far off promise of a settlement. My pride will take a hit. Such is life.

    I won’t go into a litany. Those who have been through this will know the various extra needs, those who do not, I pray you will remain care free for your entire lives.

    To be clear, we did not ask for donations, but we are accepting them. A fine line, I agree, but one I feel is important. Please do not feel obligated in any way. We would never want anyone to feel imposed upon.

    What we do ask for is positive energy, be it through prayer, meditation, quantum well wishes, whatever light you have, in any way you can send it.

    We ask that when in a motor vehicle you slow down, put away your phone, drive sober, and get home safe to your family. And let others get home safe to theirs.

    We will be setting up a foundation to raise awareness on this issue. This is a plague on human lives that is 100% preventable.

    And to address the other question, Clarice had finished her jog and was simply walking home on a residential strret. As I mentioned, the two vehicles collided in an intersection. The car veered toward the corner and smashed into Clarice, knocking her back. The SUV continued through the crash and ran her over.

    There was both an off duty nurse and police officer in nearby houses and they pulled her from under the SUV while her friend – who had just been walking north and saw the accident when she turned around at the sound of the initial crash – tried to dissuade the driver from backing up his vehicle.

    Clarice’s left wrist was broken in half. Her vertebrae almost all fractured, her T11 crushed. Her jaw was broken, her ribs fractured and broken, her internal organs lacerated, bleeding and bruised, lungs collapsed, road rash all over her body, broken fingers.

    Amazingly, she suffered no brain damage, and today, after two weeks of healing, is able to walk down the hallway and back.

    And she can speak.

    In the quiet hours of the night, when I am supposed to be out of the hospital, we speak in low tones as we reconnect to what our love was and is again. She speaks of starting a Foundation, and I listen. She speaks of raising awareness and helping affected families. For some reason the world paid attention to our accident when there are thousands like it every day. She feels the weight of millions of people who watch her recovery like a reality show, but rather than crushing her, it gives her strength.

    She has a voice, and she will use it.

    As a school teacher, she immediately thinks about her children, what if it had been one of them?

    As a mother, she immediately thinks about out baby boy. “What if” can’t even be contemplated. Instead, her heart breaks every evening he comes to visit. She can’t hold him, she can’t lift him up, she can’t play with him like she used to, And he is changing. He is growing. That time will never come back to them.

    And despite it all, her thoughts are for others.

    This is where our focus lies, and to have been spared even greater tragedy, so it should.

    Again, please slow down.

    Put away your phone.

    Pay attention to the road.

    Drive responsibly.

    You can change someone’s life in the blink of an eye. You can kill.

    If there is any message you take away today it is two fold:

    1. The world is a better place than we know, filled with better people than we imagine.

    2. Remember when you get behind the wheel of your vehicle, you are taking the reins of a potential killing machine. Please be safe.

    Hiy Hiy

    (thank you, in Cree)


    Cory Doctorow, I may never have an opportunity to do this again so I want to thank you and let you know how much I admire you and your work.


  7. I’m on mobile so this isn’t posting right. This post is in response to Antinous. Non prescription drugs are covered if the doctor writes a prescription; like tylenol for example. I feel that the questions brought up here are relevant and were presented objectively. I feel that your hostility presented throughout this thread is misplaced. At no time did I ever say people shouldn’t donate. To chastise people for asking relevant questions is worrying. If and when you can list any of these massive expenses that aren’t covered by any number of provincial or federal agencies I will be able to understand what all these donations will cover. That being said, no one owes me or anyone else an explanation as to why this family is accepting donations. I do see that the thread has gone from huge medical expenses to lost wages and home care to prescription medication to non perscription meds. One very positive thing that has dawned on me is how vital socialized medicine and strong social infrastructures are and how they can literally save lives.

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