Grover Telford. (Contributed)

Former Maple Ridge council candidate ‘grateful to be alive’

Grover Telford is expected to be transferred to a rehab facility within the next four days

A former candidate for Maple Ridge council is grateful to be alive after a series of serious illnesses sidelined him at Royal Columbian Hospital for the past month.

Grover Telford, who ran for council the three municipal elections and was hoping to run again, is expected to be transferred to a rehab facility in about four days.

“BEST NEWS EVER,” wrote Telford’s wife, Barbara Carlsen Offerhaus, on the GoFundMe page she started.

“The MRSA tests came back negative. They inserted his pick line today to administer six weeks of IV antibiotics. The MRI on his spine was all good,” added Offerhaus.

She said doctors still have to do an MRI on Telford’s brain to make sure the bleeds are diminishing.

Telford initially fell ill on Oct. 7 and was admitted to Ridge Meadows Hospital. He was diagnosed with pneumonia and methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, a bacterium found on the nose or on the skin of three out of 10 healthy people. It can cause serious infections if it enters into or through the skin. MRSA bacteria have become resistant to some antibiotics.

After two weeks on antibiotics, Telford was transferred to Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster, where it was discovered a heart valve had to be replaced.

Then, on Oct. 22, Telford went into heart failure and the cardiac surgeon had to perform emergency heart surgery.

Telford was given a 50/50 chance to make it through the surgery and a high risk of brain damage due to two brain bleeds he had suffered and a series of small strokes due to the MRSA attacking his heart.

Although he made it through without brain damage, his left leg was not functioning and he continued to be extremely ill with the MRSA.

Telford is the owner of Able Home Services, a home repair and cleaning service, and ran three times for Maple Ridge council, in the 2008, 2011 and 2014, each time coming up short.

He has sat on the Ridge Meadows Seniors Society board, on the district’s social planning advisory committee, and was a minor soccer coach.

Offerhaus expects that her husband has a long road of recovery ahead, at least six months according to the doctors.

“But he’s so grateful to be alive,” she said.

“He wanted to tell all of the friends who prayed for him and all the friends who have donated to his GoFundMe page, bless you for caring about me,” Offerhaus added.

“When I told him I had set up the GoFundMe page, he broke into tears and told me I was his miracle and that he loved me,” Offerhaus wrote, with a heart emoji at the end.

Offerhaus is trying to raise $10,000 to put towards Telford’s rehabilitation, saying the last two years have been hard financially on him as his work truck kept breaking down and what money he had went to fix it.

“He is self-employed, has no savings, no short-term or long-term disability,” she wrote in the initial post.

So far 25 people have raised $1,910 in three days.

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