Bob’s No Frills owner suffered a brain aneurysm — and survived
‘I would have never been able to tell anyone important … that I loved them’
Love and live to the fullest, urges Bob Nedelko, owner of Bob’s No Frills on Brant Street.
Just a little over a year ago, the now 50-year-old suffered a brain aneurysm and if it weren’t for the quick action of a Weston bread truck driver, paramedics and the expertise at Hamilton General Hospital, he might not be here today. He is forever changed. “I came to the realization that I would have never been able to tell anyone important to me that I loved them, or that I would not have been able to say goodbye,” said Nedelko, whose grandfather died from a brain aneurysm.
It began with a searing pain in his head.
“I had gone to open my store and I was having a conversation with the gentleman (Ken) who was delivering bread. The pain came out of nowhere and I blacked out.”
The bread truck driver performed CPR until paramedics arrived and rushed Nedelko to HGH, which is the regional Neurosurgical Centre for south central Ontario.
“It affected me both physically and mentally,” said Nedelko, who was off work for six months. “I lost significant weight and at the beginning of my recovery, just walking on my own was a task.
“My short-term memory was diminished,” Nedelko said. “I would repeatedly thank the same person for visiting me in the hospital thinking that they just arrived because when they would be out of my field of vision and reappear, I was convinced that they had just arrived.”
He said he also had difficulty judging spaces between objects.
Wanting to give back to the hospital that saved his life, Nedelko agreed to become a patient ambassador for the upcoming HGH seventh annual Strides for the General on Saturday, Sept. 16 at Bayfront Park in Hamilton. The event includes a 5K walk as well as timed 5K and 10K runs.
“The care I received was second to none. I would like to say that Hamilton General Hospital is a world class hospital.”
As an ambassador, he is working to raise awareness of the great work being done at the HGH; he notes that the regional stroke and neurosurgical centre serves a population of 2.3 million people.
“They need community support. Donors fund 100 per cent of the equipment used to diagnose, treat and care for patients. I agreed to take the position because the General saved my life. I want to pay it forward.”
Nedelko will be walking in the event with some of his No Frills staff. Strides for the General includes a complimentary lunch and breakfast, live music, medals, swag bags and prizes for top fundraisers and finishers.
Nedelko is grateful to everyone who was instrumental in saving his life, and to his family — wife Deb and stepson Garrett — and friends for their visits and care.
“I want to thank all my customers for their well wishes and genuine concern about my health. I want to thank God for giving me another chance at life.”
Proceeds from previous Strides for the General have gone towards the purchase of almost 40 pieces of essential equipment.
Organizers are hoping to attract 700 participants and raise a minimum of $150,000. To register for the event, visit hamiltonhealth.ca/ strides
Bob Nedelko, owner of Bob’s No Frills on Brant Street, survived a brain aneurysm in June 2016.