Skip to content

Meyer’s perseverance lands paramedic job during cancer fight

Chemainus man spends time between radiation and chemo fighting forest fires
Becoming a paramedic has been a great career choice for Alex Meyer while overcoming his own adversity. (Photo submitted)

Alex Meyer’s cancer fight is far from over, but he’s not sitting idle waiting for positive test results.

The Chemainus Fire Department member is still battling lymphoma and did a month of radiation in June until the middle of July in Victoria that required driving down and back five days a week. “He was fortunate it was only a short time because originally they had planned for radiation to be longer then it was,” reported wife Ashley.

Alex then had some time off between July and September and worked fighting forest fires.

“He fought the battle on (Mount) Prevost and also went to the mainland for a month to fight forest fires there,” Ashley pointed out. “So amazing between radiation and chemo what he did with his time. He loved every second of it, too.”

Related story: Firefighter’s fitness, positive attitude prominent in cancer battle

Another round of chemotherapy started in September at the Cowichan District Hospital so he was thankful about not having to do any extensive driving during that time.

“He’s got some residual lymphoma that doesn’t seem to want to go away,” added Ashley. “The doctors were very surprised after his stem cell that this was the case. As you can imagine, it was very heart-breaking news for our family.

“We have had no scans or updates to see where everything is at so at the moment we are left in the dark on how these treatments have been doing. I think we spend time trying not to think about that and just hope we get some good results.”

On the positive side, Alex is in great shape after his stem cell transplant and actually put on some much-needed weight. He passed multiple tests indicating his organs look to be in good condition.

Alex finished his Emergency Medical Response program at the Justice Institute of B.C. this summer and actually found out he was not cancer free while attending his first day.

”Everyone there wanted him to drop out but he refused and is now completed the program and working for BC ambulance,” noted Ashley.

He started in early October as an entry level paramedic, working at the Lake Cowichan station, and is hoping to take his next level to become a Primary Care Paramedic soon.

“He is very happy with his new career path and has such a soft spot for anyone working in emergency services,” Ashley indicated.

Alex will likely be doing chemotherapy until May.

The Meyers faced some further adversity during recent flooding. Alex got stranded around Merritt and had to travel into the U.S. to return home. He encountered a snow storm and had an accident with his truck crashing into a ditch in Washington state.

Alex was in a place with no cell service, but a tow truck driver happened to pass by and helped him out.

While Alex was away, the crawl space in the Meyers’ home flooded and they’ve been busy dealing with that on top of everything else in regular life.

The Meyers are clearly survivors.

Alex Meyer managed to complete his Emergency Medical Response training while still undergoing his cancer fight. (Photo submitted)
Alex Meyer has also been involved in fighting forest fires. Nothing slows him down. (Photo submitted)

Don Bodger

About the Author: Don Bodger

I've been a part of the newspaper industry since 1980 when I began on a part-time basis covering sports for the Ladysmith-Chemainus Chronicle.
Read more